BENGALURU: Lower rung police personnel in the state will get a Rs 2,000 hike in salaries by way of allowances.
Announcing this at a press conference on Friday, Chief Minister Siddaramaiah said that their main demand and subsequent recommendation by a committee set up by them was an increase in their salary. “There is disparity in pay. But now it is difficult to do it as we cannot independently increase salaries for this department. We are likely to set up a state Pay Commission next year and will be referring the matter to them,” he said.
One of the key demands of the constables was an increase in salary to bring it on par with their counterparts in other states. While a constable’s pay ranges from Rs 11,600 to Rs 21,000, a head constable’s pay ranges from Rs 12,500 to Rs 24,000.
In the absence of any change in salary, the government has introduced two new allowances. One is the conveyance allowance which will be Rs 600 per month and another is hardship allowance of Rs 1,000 per month.
In addition, the government has enhanced uniform allowance to Rs 500 per month from the existing Rs 100. These allowances will be paid from December 1, 2016 and this will be applicable from constable rank to sub- inspector.
In another change, Siddaramaiah said they would also be implementing a policy of accelerated promotion.
“Normally, constables will have to wait anywhere from 20 to 22 years for a promotion. We have decided to change it to 10 years. This way, someone who is recruited as a constable can reach the position of sub-inspector,” he said. The state will be bearing a cost of Rs 200 crore per year as a result of the allowances.
Siddaramaiah reiterated that the orderly system will be removed, but then no time frame has been set for this. Following the threat of the police constables to go on a massive strike on July 4, the government had set up a panel to assess their demands and submit a report.
Later, Home Minister Parameshwara had announced that the orderly system will be scrapped. He had also proposed they would instead follow the practice of appointing ‘dalayats’ who would be hired for the job they had to perform.
But a senior police officer said that it would take considerable time to issue an order scrapping the orderly system as they wanted to have the alternative in place by then.
Siddaramaiah also said the government had already approved recruitment of 4,561 constables and 333 sub inspectors for 2017-18 and 4,045 constables and 312 sub-inspectors for 2018-19 in view of the vacancies that would be created.
However, constables are not too happy with the announcement. “This is not satisfactory. They had promised a 27 per cent hike, but they have not been able to make it happen,” a sub inspector said.
A constable dismissed the announcements as mere drama and said weekly offs were still hard to come by. No order is published on removing the orderly system and the practice of demanding bribes for transfers is still rampant, he added.