The 7th Central Pay Commission (CPC) implementation, which is expected to be approved by the Narendra Modi government on Wednesday, may face opposition from the trade unions, including the one affiliated to the RSS.
The buzz in the media is that the Modi government could approve the 23.55 percent hike in salaries and allowances proposed by the 7th CPC at its cabinet meeting scheduled for Wednesday. The same (rate of hike and other aspects) is believed to have been accepted by the committee of secretaries (CoS) appointed by the government in January this year to oversee the implementation of the pay panel's recommendations. The minimum monthly salary recommended by the panel was Rs. 18,000.
However, the unions had got the impression that the minimum wage could be raised to Rs. 24,000. The Bhartiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS), the trade union of the BJP's parent organisation — the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh — had expressed optimism of an enhanced hike after meeting a minister in May.
"The minister said we will consider the proposal of minimum pay of Rs 24,000," Pawan Kumar, Regional Organizing Secretary, BMS, had said after meeting Jitendra Prasad, the Union Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.
If the government were to approve the minimum monthly salary as recommended by the CPC, trade unions, including the BMS, could be up in arms against the government.
The unions have demanded that the minimum monthly salary be fixed at Rs. 26,000.
Upset at what they called lack of "positive attitude" by the government, the unions, including those representing railway workers, had announced to go on an indefinite strike from July 11.
"The Seventh pay commission recommendations are totally against the expectations of employees and the government has not taken a serious view on modifying the recommendations so far," The Hindu had quoted SN Malik, press secretary at the National Federation of Indian Railwaymen (NFIR), as saying.
The delay in implementing the 7th CPC's recommendations, submitted in November last year, among others, had disappointed the unions.
"Two of the most significant issues that have triggered the strike action are the inordinate delay in taking decisions on the pay commission recommendations and the refusal of the government to bring back the old statutory defined benefit scheme of pension to all employees in place of the contributory pension scheme," Shiv Gopal Mishra, convener of the National Joint Council of Action, had said in a statement, according to the daily.