Not a single person will be denied government employment on account of the fixing of the retirement age at 56 and because of the unification of retirement age, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy has said. He was addressing a press conference along with Finance Minister K.M. Mani.

The retirement age was fixed at 56 by the government under “forced circumstances.” The United Democratic Front (UDF) had opposed the unification of pension age while it was in the Opposition. Under that system there was the spectre of mass retirements from government. Also many persons were denied promotions.

The Opposition, which on Monday raised a hue and cry over the retirement age, did not bother to note the line in the budget which said that all vacancies as on March 31 should be reported to the Public Service Commission (PSC).

The government would fill all these vacancies effective April 1, by creating supernumerary posts, Mr. Chandy said. All such persons would get salary from April 1, he added.

Suggestions

At the UDF parliamentary party meeting on Monday young MLAs offered some suggestions, included raising of the upper recruitment age to 36, Mr. Chandy said. The government had an open mind on such suggestions.

In reply to a question, Mr. Mani said the new retirement age would take effect from March 31.

Mr. Mani too said it was the circumstances created by the LDF that had led the government to fix the retirement age at 56. If there had been no unification of retirement age, there would have been no re-fixing of the retirement age, he added.