SAIL offers old festive bonus, trade unions fume

Five trade unions under National Joint Committee on Steel (NJCS) are at loggerheads with SAIL management over demand for hefty festive ex-gratia.

Published: 21st September 2022 04:37 AM  |   Last Updated: 21st September 2022 04:37 AM   |  A+A-

Rourkela Steel Plant

Rourkela Steel Plant (Representational Image)

By Express News Service

ROURKELA:  Five trade unions under National Joint Committee on Steel (NJCS) are at loggerheads with SAIL management over demand for hefty festive ex-gratia. The Central PSU recorded a net profit of Rs 12,015 crore in 2021-22 including about Rs 4,000 crore from Rourkela Steel Plant (RSP). 

Reliable sources said the core committee meeting of the NJCS held at Delhi on Monday failed as the SAIL management repeated last year’s offer. Citing heavy losses in second quarter of 2022-23 amid a hike in coal price and lowering of steel price, SAIL offered to pay Rs 21,000 and later revised it to Rs 22,000. It was, however, rejected by the five central trade unions - BMS, INTUC, HMS, CITU and AITUC - which demanded Rs 63,000 as festive ex-gratia (popularly referred as bonus) this time. 

The unions’ argument was SAIL with a Rs 3,850 crore net profit had paid bonus of Rs 21,000 and when it earned almost three-times the net profit at Rs 12,015 crore, the ex gratia should be Rs 63,000. Another core committee meeting of NJCS is fixed on September 24 to finalise the issue. Sources in the RSP said, festive ex-gratia is calculated on the basis of production and profit and SAIL reported record profit in 2021-22. Besides, it has achieved 97 percent of its Annual Production Plan so far in 2022-23. 

President of the BMS-affiliated Rourkela Ispat Karkhana Karmachari Sangh (RIKKS) Himanshu Sekhar Bal said for past 12 years, SAIL had been offering what it had been paying during 2010. Considering the price inflation in past 12 years, the workers deserve a respectable amount. 

A section of RSP workers though confided that the demand for Rs 63,000 may not be achievable. As per SAIL Performance Incentive Scheme based on the production and profit, the legitimate ex-gratia amount comes to around Rs 38,000, they said.


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