Saturday, February 6, 2016

7th Pay Commission: Ministries may make fresh salary hike demand

MINISTERS and departments can raise afresh the demand for pay revision if they find that some of the justified suggestions made by the staff associations were not accepted by the 7th Central Pay Commission, says a media report.
Such demands could be submitted to the Implementation Cell (IC), created in the Finance Ministry, to work as Secretariat for the Empowered Committee of Secretaries headed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha.
The CoS will screen the recommendations...
of the Commission and firm up the conclusions for approval of the Cabinet.
"If a representation was made by a Staff Association before the 7th Central Pay Commission and the Commission after due diligence has not accepted the demand made there in, the same matter normally not be considered at the stage.
"However, if departments consider that the issues are of such nature that they require consideration at this stage also, then they may give their comments with full justifications to the IC," said the minutes of the first meeting of the IC.
While a number of ministries/departments have sent their comments and nominated their Nodal Officers, the comments received from some ministries are "simply in the nature of forwarding" the representations of the staff associations without their comments.
Once implemented, the recommendations would impact the salaries of nearly 47 lakh central government employees and 52 lakh pensioners.
The recommendations will take effect from January 1, 2016.
Minutes of the meeting, held on February 2, also said it was also impressed upon the Nodal Officers of ministries and departments that "in case, there is any need" consultation with the Staff Association at the level of department, "the same may be done as per the assessment of the department".
Further, if a department is of the view that any recommendation needs modification, adequate justification should be brought out while sending the comments to the IC.
The meeting was held to formulate the action points on processing of Commission.
Earlier, Centre on January 13 decided to set up a high-powered panel headed by Cabinet Secretary PK Sinha to process the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission. The Cabinet has approved the setting up of Empowered Committee of Secretaries to process the recommendations of 7th Pay Commission in an overall perspective. The implementation of the new pay scales is estimated to put an additional burden of Rs 1.02 lakh crore on the exchequer in 2016-17.
The Empowered Committee of Secretaries will function as a Screening Committee to process the recommendations with regard to all relevant factors of the Commission in an expeditious detailed and holistic fashion, an official statement said.
The seventh central pay commission on November 19 recommended a 23.55 per cent hike in the cumulative earnings of serving and retired central government employees. The figure of 23.55 per cent covers the increases in pay, allowances and pension.
However, the recommended raise in basic pay is only 14.27 per cent – the lowest in 70 years. The basic pay determines various allowances. The previous commission had recommended a 20 per cent hike, which the government doubled while implementing it in 2008.
The gratuity ceiling will be enhanced to Rs 20 lakh from Rs 10 lakh. It will be raised by 25 per cent whenever dearness allowance goes up by 50 per cent.
The recommendations of the pay commission will come into effect from January 1, 2016.
The pay commission, headed by Justice A.K. Mathur, submitted its 900-page report to Union finance minister Arun Jaitley at his residence. A secretariat headed by the expenditure secretary will study the report before the government takes the final decision. Normally, the government doesn’t reject the commission’s recommendations.

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