New Delhi, Aug.15 : The Prime Minister, Dr. Manmohan Singh, on Friday said during the course of his address to the nation on the occasion of the 62nd Independence Day that his government has gone beyond the recommendations made by the Sixth Pay Commission in increasing emoluments of government employees.
"While doing this we have taken special care of the interests and welfare of our armed forces and paramilitary forces,and government employees working at lower levels in our civil services. This is one more step in making Government more efficient," Dr. Singh while making a formal announcement on the commission's recommendations, which were approved by the Union cabinet on Thursday.
The new pay commission's recommendations will be effective from January 1, 2006 as the term of the Fifth Pay Commission ended on December 31, 2005.
However, the arrears will not be disbursed in one go but will be divided into two components to be given by the end of next year. Forty percent of the arrears will be disbursed in 2008, while the remaining 60 percent will be doled out after March 2009. The cost to the government will be over Rs.23,000 crores.
As per the cleared proposal, the minimum basic pay for government employees has been revised to Rs 7000, while the minimum salary per month at the lowest level will now be Rs 10000.
At least three promotions will be ensured for both civilian and defence personnel. In case of civilians it will be at the 10th, 20th and 30th year and in case of defence by 16th, 18th and 24th year.
Under the commission's recommendations, the armed forces and other central government employees an average increase of 21 percent in salaries and at least three assured promotion by accepting the Sixth Pay Commission report.
Chairman, Joint Chiefs of Staff Committee and Navy Chief, Admiral Sureesh Mehta, on Thursday welcomed the government's decision to consider the pay demands of the armed forces.
He said that even as more details are awaited, prima-facie, all the concerns of the defence forces appear to have been suitably addressed.
"Increase in Military Service Pay of PBORs and compensation for middle-rung officers' are particularly heartening. The decision to credit arrears from January 01, 2006 is most welcome," Admiral Mehta added.
The grade pay of the middle level officers from captain to Brigadier has been enhanced. Officers like Colonels and Brigadiers have been put in Pay Band-4 and the pay band has been modified to Rs.37400-67000 instead of Rs.39200-67000.
Grade pay of Major General has been increased to Rs.11000 and that of Lieutenant General to Rs.13000.
The Military Service Pay of PBORs has been increased from Rs.1000 to Rs.2000 per month. Weightage ratio of five years for gratuity for PBORs will continue.
There is also good news for war-disabled personnel as the disability pension has been doubled from Rs.1550 to Rs.3100 and war disability pension to be granted at 60 percent.
The rate of Special Forces allowance for the Army and the Air Force will be equated with Navy's Marine Commando allowance.
The Government announced an average increase of 21 per cent in salaries of 55 lakh Central Government employees with effect from January 1, 2006.
The wage hike would increase the financial implication for the Centre by Rs.17,798 crore annually and the arrears with effect from January 2006 would cost Rs.29,373 crore.
The financial implications, with the implementation of the new structure, for the central government for the year 2008-09 will be Rs 15,700, while for the railways it will be to the tune of Rs 6400.