Aarti Dhar

Pay panel proposals accepted with modifications

NEW DELHI: The Union Cabinet on Thursday accepted the recommendations of the Sixth Central Pay Commission with some modifications suggested by the Committee of Secretaries. With this, the pay of about 50 lakh government employees will go up by at least 21 per cent.

The revised pay scales will come into effect from January 1, 2006 and the revised rates of allowances from September 1 this year. The arrears will be paid in cash in two instalments – the first one of 40 per cent during 2008-09 and the remaining in the next financial year.

The burden in 2008-09 on account of the implementation of the Srikrishna Commission recommendations would be around Rs. 15,700 crore on the Union budget and Rs. 6,400 crore on the Railway budget, Information and Broadcasting Minister Priyaranjan Dasmunsi told journalists after a Cabinet meeting.

The wage hike would increase the financial implications for the Centre by Rs. 17,798 crore annually and the arrears, with effect from January 2006, would cost Rs. 29,373 crore.

The minimum basic pay for an employee was increased to Rs. 7,000 from Rs. 6,660 recommended by the Commission. Consequently, the total emoluments of an employee at the lowest level would exceed Rs. 10,000 a month, including allowances.

The Cabinet decided to revise the fitment rate that helps in arriving at higher allowances in view of the merger of 50 per cent of dearness allowance with the basic pay, from 28 per cent (as recommended by the Commission) to 40 per cent. The rate of annual increment was hiked from 2.5 to 3 per cent.

Assured promotions

At least three promotions have been assured for all defence personnel and civilian employees under the modified Assured Career Progression scheme.

While civilians would get it after 10, 20 and 30 years of service, the jawans would get it in 8, 16 and 24 years. The Cabinet decided to double the Military Service Pay (MSP) to Rs. 2,000. The officers would get an MSP of Rs. 6,000 over and above their pay. Also, middle-level officers such as colonels and brigadiers have been placed in the highest pay band and senior Lt. Generals, overlooked for promotion due to lack of residual service, would get the grade of Army Commanders (Secretary grade).

As a replacement for the pay scale of Rs. 24,050 – Rs. 26,000, a separate pay scale was created for the Directors-General of Police, Principal Chief Conservators of Forest, General Managers (Railways), and members of the Boards of Income Tax, Customs and Central Excise, Postal and Ordnance Factories, among others, who were in this pre-revised scale.

This would take their pay to the level of Rs. 80,000 in two years, as against three years in the pre-revised scale.