NEW DELHI: In relief to Central government employees and pensioners, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked a Committee of Secretaries to accept the 7th Pay Commission’s recommendations without diluting them to provide maximum benefits to over 47 lakh government employees and 52 lakh pensioners.
The empowered committee, which was headed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha and comprised of 12 Secretaries, was set up on January 27 to process the recommendations of the Seventh Central Pay Commission.
A top official in the government told Express that the Committee has been asked to speed up the review so that the Cabinet can take a decision and the 7th Pay Commission award can be released at the earliest to the employees and pensioners.
“The government feels that recommendations to introduce a health insurance scheme for staff and pensioners and double gratuity should not be diluted. The committee has been told to address the genuine concerns raised by stakeholders and accommodate their demands as much as possible. Although, there is indication that the committee may suggest some changes keeping in mind representations from middle and junior level, the decision will be taken after consultations with all the stakeholders. The entire process will take a couple of months,” the official added.
The pay panel recommended 23.55 per cent increase in pay and allowances and also recommended fixing minimum pay at Rs 18,000 per month and maximum at Rs 2.55 lakh. The ceiling of gratuity has been increased from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 20 lakh and 24 per cent hike has been recommended in pensions.
The Committee has secretaries from the Finance Ministry, Home, Defence, Department of Personnel and Training, Department of Pension, Revenue, Expenditure, Health, Post, Science & Technology on board. Besides, Chairman, Railway Board, Deputy Comptroller & Auditor General and Secretary (Security) are also on the board. The committee may co-opt with any other Secretary, whenever found necessary.
The committee will also examine the views of the concerned stakeholders including staff associations before finalising it for Cabinet approval.