7th Pay Commission: No hike in minimum pay, No change in fitment factor and No change in retirement age

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Indian Military Veterans

7th Pay Commission: No hike in minimum pay, No change in fitment factor and No change in retirement age

There was a bitter disappointment in store for fifty lakh Central government employees and an equal number of retirees, who have been waiting for a hike in minimum pay and fitment factor beyond the 7th Pay Commission recommendations. There was lot of speculation that PM Narendra Modi may give some good news in his last Independence Day budget in this term as PM. Many believed that looking at good monsoon and positive economic factors, a positive announcement may come months before the general elections. 
While PM Modi spoke about how Indian economy will be a powerhouse in next three decades, he didn't have any news to offer for the government employees. 
Minister of State for Finance P. Radhakrishnan earlier in Lok Sabha had said that the Prime Minister's Narendra Modi government is not planning to give any hike in minimum basic salary beyond the recommendations of the seventh pay commission. However, the Haryana government approved pay scale recommendations of teaching and non-teachings staff at government universities, government universities and govt-aided colleges with effect from Jan 1,2016.
The Maha government also has announced a salary hike under 7th Pay Commission from January 2019 for 17 lakh state employees. . So obviously the Central government employees are also hoping for some positive news. It may be noted that the government at any time can announce such a decision, and it doesn't need to be on a special day. It may come closer in the heels to the election. 
It is to be noted though that in the hopes of minimum pay hike beyond the recommendations of the 7th CPC might get a blow from the Central Bank itself. Earlier this month, RBI decided to increase the policy repo rate by 25 basis points to 6.5%. The reverse repo rate has been hiked to 6.25%, the RBI announced after its three-day Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) meeting.
"RBI's Monetary Policy Committee has decided to increase the policy repo rate under the liquidity adjustment facility (LAF) by 25 basis points to 6.5% Consequently, the reverse repo rate under the LAF stands adjusted to 6.25% and marginal standing facility rate and Bank Rate to 6.75%," the apex bank said in a statement. 
RBI in its report mentioned that inflation rates have increased on account of implementation of 7th Pay Commission. The revised HRA structure came into place in July 2017 under the 7th Pay Commission.
Currently, the Central government employees are getting basic pay according to the fitment formula of 2.57 of the basic pay and if this big step is taken, it will come as a massive news for the Central government employees. Fitment factor is a figure used by 7th CPC with which the basic pay in 6th CPC regime (i.e Pay in Pay band + Grade pay) is multiplied in order to fix basic pay in revised pay structure (i.e 7th CPC). Fitment factor formulated by 7th CPC is 2.57.
There were talks about Modi raising the retirement age of central government employees. That also didn't come through


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PM visits Kerala, reviews relief and rescue operations

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Indian Military Veterans
Prime Minister's Office

PM visits Kerala, reviews relief and rescue operations

Posted On: 18 AUG 2018 11:06AM by PIB Delhi
The Prime Minister visited Kerala to review the situation arising out of floods in the State. After a review meeting, he made an aerial assessment of the damages caused due to floods in some of the affected areas of the State, as permitted by weather conditions.  During the aerial survey, the Prime Minister was accompanied by the Governor, the Chief Minister, Shri K.J. Alphons (Union Minister of State) and officials.

The Prime Minister expressed his grief and sorrow on the unfortunate deaths and damage caused to lives and property due to floods. 

The Prime Minister reviewed the flood situation during a meeting with Shri PinarayiVijayan, the Chief Minister of Kerala, and officials of the State Government.

After the review, the Prime Minister announced a financial assistance of Rs 500 crore to the State. This is in addition to Rs. 100 Cr. announced by the Home Minister on 12.08.2018.  He also assured the State Government that relief materials including foodgrains, medicines etc would be provided, as requested.

PM also announced ex-gratia of @ Rs. 2 lakh per person to the next kin of the deceased and @ Rs. 50,000 to those seriously injured from PM’s National Relief Funds (PMNRF).
PM has directed Insurance Companies to hold special camps for assessment & timely release of compensation to the affected families/beneficiaries under Social Security Schemes. The directions have also been issued for early clearance of claims under FasalBimaYojna to agriculturists. 

PM has directed National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) to repair main national highways damaged due to floods on priority. The Central Public Sector like NTPC and PGCIL have also been directed to be available to render all possible assistance to the State Government in restoring power lines.

Villagers, whose kutcha houses have been destroyed in the devastating floods, would be provided Pradhan MantriAwasYojana-Gramin houses on priority irrespective of their priority in the Permanent Wait List of PMAY-G.

Under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme 5.5 Cr. person days have been sanctioned in the labour budget 2018-19. Any further request for incurring the person days would be considered as per the requirement projected by the State.

Under the Mission for Integrated Development of Horticulture, farmers would be provided assistance for replantation of damaged horticulture crops.

The flood situation in Kerala has been continuously and closely monitored by the Union Government. All help is being provided to the State Government to deal with the adverse situation. The Prime Minister has been in constant touch with the Chief Minister regarding the flood situation.

On the direction of the Prime Minister,  Shri KirenRijiju, MoS (Home) accompanied by the Shri K.J. Alphons, MoS (I/C), and a high-level Central Team visited the flood affected districts of Alappuzha and Kottayam on 21.07.2018, reviewed the flood situation, relief measures and met affected people. 

On 12th August, 2018, Shri Rajnath Singh, Union Home Minister accompanied by Shri K.J. Alphons, MoS (I/C), Tourism and senior officers visited the flood/landslide affected areas of Kerala and carried out aerial survey of the affected areas and reviewed the search, rescue and relief measures taken by the State and Central Government agencies with CM, Kerala, and other Ministers and Officials. The Home Minister also announced release of Rs. 100 Cr. in advance from the NDRF.

An Inter-Ministerial Centre Team (IMCT) has already visited the affected areas in the State for assessment of losses from 7-12 August, 2018 as per the Memorandum dated 21.07.2018 submitted by the State Government.

57 Teams of NDRF involving about 1300 personnel and 435 Boats are deployed for search and rescue operations. Five (5) Companies of BSF, CISF and RAF’s have been deployed in the State to carry out rescue and relief measures.

 The Army, Air Force, Navy and Coast Guard are also deployed for assisting the State in search & rescue operations. A total of 38 helicopters have been deployed for rescue and relief measures. In addition, 20 Aircraft are also being used for ferrying resources. Army has deployed 10 Columns and 10 Teams of Engineering Task Force (ETFs) involving around 790 trained personnel’s. Navy is providing 82 teams. The Coast Guard has provided 42 teams; 2 helicopters and 2 ships.

Since 9th August, the NDRF, Army and Navy together have rescued /evacuated 6714 persons and provided medical assistance to 891 persons.

The Prime Minister complimented the State Government for the efforts made in meeting the challenges of the unprecedented situation. He observed that rescue of people who are still marooned remains the topmost priority. Government of India will continue to support the State Government in all its endeavours.



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Army Canteen’s profit zooms as companies fall in line

, by indianmilitaryveterans

Indian Military Veterans
The Canteen Stores Department (CSD), which runs retail stores for the armed forces, said it has posted record profit during FY17-18, after it collected tax refunds from a few states and imposed penalties on companies that flouted fair pricing norms, which included matching and promotional offers given to other retailers.

CSD, or Army Canteen, which, incidentally, is a not-for-profit organisation, earned Rs 1,253 crore during the year to March, significantly higher than other retailers in the country. A year ago, it had earned a net profit of Rs 280 crore on sales of Rs 17,000 crore.

“This is the biggest profit ever for CSD. Debit note was issued for all companies that deviated and didn’t pass promotional scheme which alone was in excess of Rs 500 crore,” said M Baladitya, chairman of the board of administration at CSD, that clocked sales of Rs 18,000 crore during the year to March 2018. He declined to share the names of companies that violated pricing norms.
CSD’s retail outlets sell 5,300 products ranging from biscuits and beer to shampoos and cars to 12 million consumers — personnel of the army, navy and air force, exservicemen and their families.

Started in 1948, it is managed by the Ministry of Defence and comprises 3,901 unitrun canteens and 34 depots. Interestingly, CSD’s number is higher than the combined profit of Future Retail, D’ Mart, Shoppers Stop and Tata Trent.
In April this year, ET had reported that CSD has booked Rs 1,100 crore in profit over the past two years through long-delayed value added tax (VAT) refunds from several state governments and penalties from companies that breached fair-pricing agreements. CSD said profit was higher due to exceptional income and doesn’t necessarily reflect on operational profit.

“Every year, we had to make provisions in the balance sheet for VAT refunds as NPA. Over the past two years, we have pursued these cases in six states and booked these as a one-time gain,” said Baladitya. More than Rs 700 crore refund from states — Gujarat, Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Maharashtra, Telangana and Madhya Pradesh — were booked last fiscal.

Army canteens have more than 600 suppliers competing to provide a range of products including toiletries and cosmetics, household goods, footwear and accessories and food items, stationery, electronics and consumer durables, liquor and a variety of vehicles.

For most consumer product and liquor companies, CSD accounts for 5-7% of their total volume sales. Typically, the price differential between retail stores and CSD ranges from 10-40%.

Army canteens get a refund of 50% of the goods and services tax (GST) paid from the states and the Centre. “It is just not possible to sell products at prices lower than us since the government waives a substantial amount of taxes and we negotiate with companies for discounts as well,” said Baladitya



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