23.5% hike pro­posed for 48 lakh govt staff

Re­port sub­mit­ted to FM; 55 lakh pen­sion­ers will also ben­e­fit

Hindustan Times ST (Mumbai) - HT Navi Mumbai Live - - HT NAVI MUMBAI - HT Cor­re­spon­dent let­ters@hin­dus­tan­times.com

NEW DELHI: In the new year, cen­tral gov­ern­ment employees can look for­ward to fat­ter pay cheques and heftier al­lowances.

The sev­enth pay com­mis­sion on Thurs­day rec­om­mended an av­er­age 23.55% in­crease in their salary, al­lowances and pen­sion, a move that will ben­e­fit 4.8 mil­lion staffers and 5.5 mil­lion pen­sion­ers. The hike will be ef­fec­tive from Jan­uary 1, 2016.

A min­i­mum pay of Rs18,000 per month and a max­i­mum of Rs2.5 lakh has been rec­om­mended by the com­mis­sion, headed by jus­tice (re­tired) AK Mathur, that pre­sented its 900-page re­port to fi­nance min­is­ter Arun Jait­ley.

More cash in hand is likely to re­sult in higher consumption by the gov­ern­ment’s mas­sive em­ployee base, which ac­counts for a large seg­ment of the In­dian mid­dle-class. More de­mand could boost the econ­omy through higher spend­ing on as­sets such as cars and hous­ing.

The gov­ern­ment usu­ally ac­cepts the broad pro­pos­als for pay re­vi­sion — due ev­ery 10 years — and state gov­ern­ments usu­ally re­spond with their own hikes.

Jait­ley said a sec­re­tariat will be set up to im­ple­ment the pay panel rec­om­men­da­tions. A sep­a­rate em­pow­ered com­mit­tee of var­i­ous de­part­ments will ex­am­ine the sug­ges­tions of the panel.

“The rec­om­men­da­tions will be ex­am­ined ex­pe­di­tiously and the gov­ern­ment will take a fi­nal de­ci­sion,” Jait­ley said.

The gov­ern­ment’s spend­ing on em­ployee pay­outs will rise by R1.02 lakh crore. Of this, ex­pen­di­ture on salaries will go up by R39,100 crore and al­lowances by R29,300 crore, while re­vised pen­sions would R33,700 crore.

A fresh IAS re­cruit will get a ba­sic salary of Rs56,000 a month against Rs23,000 cur­rently, while a se­poy in the In­dian Army will earn Rs21,700 per month from Rs8,460 cur­rently. In ad­di­tion, employees are paid dear­ness al­lowance and house rent among many other al­lowances.

If ac­cepted, the new pro­pos­als will set R18,000 as the min­i­mum pay of an em­ployee on the cen­tral gov­ern­ment’s rolls. At present the min­i­mum salary is Rs7,000.

The to­tal emol­u­ments of a gen­eral helper — the low­est ranked em­ployee — amount to Rs22,579, more than dou­ble that of his coun­ter­part in the pri­vate sec­tor, a study com­mis­sioned by the panel found.

The com­mis­sion has pro­posed a change in the salary struc­ture by do­ing away with the sys­tem of pay bands and grade pay and rec­om­mended “pay ma­trix”. It has also called for scrap­ping over­time al­lowance and in­ter­est-free loans to buy mo­tor ve­hi­cles.

CON­TIN­UED ON P6 RE­LATED RE­PORTS, P13

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