The National Joint Council of Action (NJCA), aggrieved over the delay on higher allowances under the 7th Pay Commission recommendations, may call for nationwide strike if the Committee on Allowance fails to submit its final report.
According to media reports, the Committee on Allowances is likely to submit its report on higher allowances under the 7th Pay Commission to the Finance Ministry this week. But there is no official confirmation in this regard. It’s been almost nine months since the formation of the Committee on Allowances, but it is yet to submit its report.
Meanwhile, the National Council Staff Side has called a meeting on May 2 of the Joint Consultative Machinery (JCM) to discuss the next course of action if the Committee on Allowance further delays report.
National Joint Council of Action (NJCA) convenor Shiv Gopal Mishra said the central government employees might go on strike if the Committee on Allowances delays the report further or rejected their demands.
The NJCA is leading the negotiation over 7th Pay Commission on behalf of central government employees. Shiv Gopal Mishra also informed that the issues of abolition of ‘option 1’ for pensioners will be discussed at the JCM meet too. Option 1 allowed pensioners to avail their pension hike as per the pay band in which they were enrolled at the time of retirement. Pensioners were forced to accept option 2 as option 1 had been rejected.
“The JCM meeting is called on May 2. Whether the Lavasa Committee submits it report or not (by the end of the month), the meet would be held. If the report on allowances is not tabled, then we will plan the next step of action. I cannot rule out the option of reviving the call for strike. After all, how long should the employees wait?” said Shiv Gopal Mishra.
The issue of hike in minimum pay would also be discussed at the JCM meet. “It is the centrifugal issue. All pay commission so far had kept the issue of minimum salary at the centre. We will negotiate with the government and attempt to persuade them,” he said.
The 7th Pay Commission had also recommended abolition of 52 allowances and subsuming 37 others out of 196 allowances, which triggered resentment among central government employees. Central government employees are unhappy because of the reduction in housing rent allowance (HRA) and want the government to increase basic pay from from Rs 18,000 to Rs 26,000.