Tamil Nadu Government Employees’ Union State president Ku.Paul Pandian said around 6,000 AEs would benefit from the interim order.

Providing relief to several thousands of assistant engineers in different departments of the State government, an order has been issued, protecting the existing pay for the month of August.

It follows an interim order passed by the Madras High Court last week on writ petitions and batch cases that challenged the orders (in GO Ms.No. 242 dated July 22) issued by the Finance Department based on the recommendations of the Pay Grievance Redressal Cell.

According to the order issued by Principal Secretary (Finance) K.Shanmugam on Monday said, “the court was pleased to pass interim order that there should not be any reduction in pay” pursuant to the July 22 order. The order directed the Pay and Accounts Officers, Treasury Officers and Sub-Treasury Officers to admit the pay bills of the employees for the month of August without any reduction in pay.

Tamil Nadu Government Employees’ Union State president Ku.Paul Pandian said around 6,000 AEs would benefit from the interim order. The AEs, he said, were spread across various departments such as Public Works, Agriculture and Transport.  

Stating that it was not fair to reduce the enhanced pay, Mr.Pandian said such issues could have been avoided by holding discussions with employees whose salaries were being altered.

Sources familiar with the issue said the Pay Grievance Redressal Cell recommended to the State government that the scale of pay of Assistant Engineers be brought down to Pay Band-2 at Rs.9,300 – Rs.34,800. Its recommendation was to correct the anomaly as a result of the previous One Man Commission recommendation fixing the pay of AEs in Pay Band-3 (Rs.15,600-39,100 plus a grade pay of Rs.5,400).

This placed the AEs pay wise on a par with posts recruited through Group-I services such as Deputy Collectors, Assistant Director (Panchayats) and Deputy Superintendents of Police.

The government, however, granted a new scale of pay one level below in which the grade pay was Rs.5,100. As a result, the pay scales of various posts had to be changed. The Pay Grievance Redressal Cell suggested the scale of pay of AEs be brought down – for this it compared the scale of pay of AEs in Central Public Works Department – even while recommending that Rs.5,100 grade pay be maintained. This would maintain an appropriate difference of Rs.700 in grade pay from Junior Engineers.

The July order pertained to various posts and the revision of scale of pay took notional effect from January 1, 2006/December 12, 2007 with monetary benefit from April 1, this year.

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