The long standing demand of the Kerala State Excise Officers’ Association to bring pay parity in Police and Excise departments would be realised once the proposed IX pay revision commission submits its report, Minister for Excise and Labour P.K. Gurudasan has said.

Inaugurating the 31 State conference of the Association here, the Minister said it had been a long standing demand from the Excise personnel that pay parity be brought between the Police Constable and the Excise Guard. The issues involved would be sorted out soon and parity would be brought in when the new pay revision commission recommendations were implemented by next year, he said.

The Minister said the government has already initiated the modernisation programme in Excise Department. As part of this, those above the rank of Inspector would be provided with pistols. Efforts are also on to modernise their communications system. The excise personnel would soon be provided with mobile zim cards for easy communication. The government has also decided to provide more jeeps to the department. As of now, there are 85 jeeps he said and added that another 35 numbers would be added soon.

The government has also decided to strengthen the presence of the Excise personnel at the check posts. This includes the 32 minor check posts which will be provided with Excise Inspectors and corresponding subordinate personnel, he said.

He stressed the need for the Excise department, the biggest contributor to the State’s exchequer, to strengthen its activities.

This would not only bring in more revenue, but also bring down corrupt practices, he said.

E. Shihabuddin, Association president, chaired the session. V.N. Vasavan MLA, K.C. Joseph, MLA, Kottayam Municipal chairperson Bindu Santhosh Kumar, Deputy Excise commissioner S. Unnikrishnan, association general secretary P.K. Sanu and others spoke on the occasion.

Excise personnel who received Chief Minister’s Excise Medal were honoured on the occasion.