Chief Minister J Jayalalithaa announced bonus and ex-gratia for employees of Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation Ltd, state...
transport undertakings, Tamil Nadu Civil Supplies Corporation, cooperative unions, Poompuhar Shipping Corporation and other organisations.
The government has allocated a total of Rs 242.41 crore for bonus and ex-gratia for more than 3.76 lakh employees. The bonus percentage is along the lines of last year's although the total amount allocated is slightly higher.
Employees of public sector undertakings, however, are not happy with the bonus announced. Union leaders were quoted in a national daily as saying that the rate of bonus has not changed in the last decade and an employee will get a maximum of only Rs. 8,400 as bonus.
"The 20% rate of bonus was fixed in 2000 by the DMK government and after this in 2001 the rate was reduced to 8.33% by the AIADMK government. But after protests the previous rate was restored. Since then the same rate has been continued despite all round inflation," said TNEB union leader S Rathinasabapathi was quoted as saying.
Salaries and pensions constitute around 30 percent of the state's budget outlay but this is expected to increase with the implementation of 7th Pay Commission recommendations.
Experts say salaries may not be a burden provided tax revenue increases but if there is shortfall in revenue, then a problem is on hand.
PMK founder S Ramadoss, in a statement, quoted a central legislation stating that Rs. 7,000 should be taken as the ceiling for calculating bonus. He also said that transport workers and employees of loss-making units should have received higher bonus.