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7th Pay Commission – Unions Seek Pay Increase To Ensure Minimum ‘Living Wage’

7th Pay Commission – Unions Seek Pay Increase To Ensure Minimum ‘Living Wage’

7th Pay Commission –  The minimum pay should be set at the level of a “living wage” to lift millions of central government employees out of poverty, a senior leader of central government employees unions said, ahead of central trade unions three-day relay dharna before Parliament, which began yesterday and will go on till Saturday.

The leader signaled an increase in unions pay demand for the National Anomaly Committee (NAC) to set the minimum at a level that prevents poverty.

The living wage is defined as the level allowing a low-paid employee to support themselves and their family, for which the most common measurement is Rs 26,000 per month and the leader also said to raise fitment factor 3.68 times from 2.57 times for all employees.

He said the current minimum pay of Rs 18,000 per month “would not even come close” to the level required to pay for basic goods and services.

“No consideration was given by the 7th Pay commission to explain the base on which the minimum pay adjustment was build to be called fair and reasonable,” he said.

The 7th Pay Commission, led by Justice A K Mathur, earlier proposed minimum basic pay from Rs 7,000 to Rs 18,000 per month while the maximum basic pay from Rs 80,000 to Rs 2.5 lakh with a fitment factor of 2.57 times of basic pay of sixth pay commission has been proposed uniformly.

In September’2016, the NAC was set up to look into the pay irregularities arising out of the 7th Pay Commission recommendations in wake of central government employees’ dissatisfaction over the inadequate hike in pay.

“When millions of employees have fallen into poverty, the government needs to consider a pay rise,” he added.

“Every-day living is tough, buying food is expensive, we have to pay more for petrol to go to work, hence pay should be raised,” he said.

“We were hoping that the NAC meet would be held in October. However the meet got postponed owing to the elections but we hope the NAC will definitely meet in December and the proposal of hike in pay will be submitted by January,” the leader added.

“The inordinate delay in pay hike has led to a lot of mental stress and trauma among the central government employees, so we have decided, if Finance Minister Arun Jaitley fails to implement the pay hike in January, then we would call for a nation wide indefinite strike,” he confirmed.

Jaitley had promised to raise the minimum pay of the central government employees in a meeting with the union leaders on June 30, 2016, day after the cabinet approval of the 7th Pay Commission recommendations, but he has failed to implement pay hike till date.

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