7th Pay Commission: Employees unions to strike for higher allowances

7th Pay Commission: Employees unions to strike for higher allowances

New Delhi: The central government employees unions, aggrieved over the delay on higher allowances under the 7th Pay Commission recommendations, may call for nationwide strike if the Committee on Allowance fails to submit its final report within this month.

The Committee on Allowances is likely to submit its report on higher allowances under the 7th Pay Commission to the Finance Ministry this week, media reported.

But there is no official confirmation in this regard.

It’s been almost nine months since the formation of the Committee on Allowances, but it is yet to submit its report.

The government in July last year had formed the ‘Committee on Allowances’, headed by Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa, for examination of the recommendations of 7th Pay Commission on allowances other than dearness allowance as the pay commission had recommended abolition of 51 allowances and subsuming 37 others out of 196 allowances.

The committee was asked to submit its report within four months, but later its tenure was extended to February 22, this year.

However, the Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa said in October last year, “We are ready to submit our report, when the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley calls up.”

Meanwhile, the National Council Staff Side has called a meeting on May 2 of the Joint Consultative Machinery (JCM) to discuss the next course of action if the Committee on Allowance further delays report.

National Joint Council of Action (NJCA) convenor Shiv Gopal Mishra said the central government employees might go on strike if the Committee on Allowances delays the report further or rejected their demands.

The National Joint Council of Action (NJCA) is an umbrella organisation of various Central Government employees unions, including Railways, post and telegraph and Income Tax.

The NJCA is leading the negotiation over 7th Pay Commission on behalf of central government employees.

“The JCM meeting is called on May 2. Whether the Lavasa Committee submits it report or not (by the end of the month), the meet would be held.

If the report on allowances is not tabled, then we will plan the next step of action. I cannot rule out the option of reviving the call for strike.

After all, how long should the employees wait?” said Shiv Gopal Mishra.

The issue of hike in minimum pay would also be discussed at the JCM meet.

“It is the centrifugal issue. All pay commission so far had kept the issue of minimum salary at the centre. We will negotiate with the government and attempt to persuade them,” he said.

Central government employees are unhappy because of the pay commission recommendation of reducing the house rent allowance (HRA) to 24%, 16% and 8% of basic pay as against the 30%, 20% and 10% of basic pay employees were drawing under the Sixth Pay Commission.

It is noted that central government employees unions also demanded for hiking minimum pay Rs 18,000 to Rs 26,000 and they asked to raising fitment factor 3.68 times from 2.57 times approved by the government based on the pay commission recommendations.

If the 2.57 fitment formula is tinkered with, then salary and pension in general for all central government employees will go up.


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