As Wait For Minimum Pay Hike Gets Longer, Central Government Employees Reiterate Threat to Strike
After a long delay in government’s decision to hike minimum pay and fitment factor beyond the recommendation of the 7th Pay Commission or 7th CPC, central government employees’ unions reiterated their threat to launch an indefinite strike. Though the government officials have been saying the Centre is committed to raising minimum pay and fitment factor beyond the recommendation of the 7th Pay Commission, no positive development is seen in this regard so far. (Also Read – 7th Pay Commission: After 7CPC Declared as Last Pay Commission; Here’s What Might Happen to Minimum Wage)
The central government employees had pinned hopes on the National Anomaly Committee (NAC), which was constituted in September 2016 to look into pay anomalies arising out of the implementation of the 7th Pay Commission’s recommendations. There had been reports that the government had given green signal to the NAC to suggest a hike in minimum pay and fitment factor beyond the recommendation of the 7th Pay Commission.
However, a letter from the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) to Secretary of Staff Side Shiv Gopal Mishra stated that the demand for an increase in minimum pay and fitment formula beyond the recommendation of the 7th Pay Commission does not appear to be treated as an anomaly, therefore, these do not come under the purview of the NAC.
Speaking to Sen Times, an office-bearer of a central government employees unions expressed disappointment and said, “There were inordinate delays in hike in minimum pay. We will proceed on an indefinite strike over it.” “This is very surprising, the Finance Minister didn’t keep his promise to hike in minimum pay and fitment factor,” he added.
Meanwhile, the government officials said the government may form a high-level committee to fix new pay structure beyond the recommendation of the 7th Pay Commission. “The Finance Ministry remains committed to finding the solution to hike in minimum pay beyond the 7th Pay Commission recommendations for the central government employees, accordingly a High-Level Committee is likely to be formed to formulate a new pay structure beyond the 7th Pay Commission’s recommendations,” the officials were quoted as saying.
On June 30, 2016, a day after the Cabinet cleared the 7th Pay Commission recommendations, Arun Jaitley had promised to appoint a high-level committee to look into the issue of hike in minimum pay and fitment factor. The 7th Pay Commission had recommended a 14.27 percent hike in basic pay — the lowest in 70 years, raising minimum pay from Rs 7,000 to Rs 18,000 month. The central government employees have been asking to raise minimum pay to Rs 26,000 from Rs 18,000 and fitment factor 3.68 times from 2.57 times.