Friday, August 28, 2015

It’s bizarre. You can calculate your pay hike even before 7th Pay Commission submits its report

Under Construction? A work in progress in 7th CPC
SOUNDS odd, but random internet sites have placed calculators to give you a fair idea of what could be your salary hike post 7th Central Pay Commission recommendations, even as the union cabinet on Wednesday gave its nod for the extension of the Pay Commission’s terms by four months, i.e. up to December 31, 2015. So, the question is how can you know your new salary when the 7th CPC is yet to finish writing its reports? BoI finds out this simple formula. In fact, if you…
read the last two reports, 5th CPC (submitted in January 1997) and 6th CPC (submitted in March 2008), you would notice that the pay hike was by and large based on a simple arithmetic of multiplication of 3 (on an average three times pay hike) though there have been cosmetic changes in pay bands etc. The top bureaucrat – the cabinet secretary’s basic pay, for example, was Rs 9,000 per month post 4th Pay Commission (1986) which was hiked to Rs 30,000 by 5th Pay Commission (1996), and to Rs 90,000 by 6th Pay Commission (2006).
So, if you go by this plain vanilla arithmetic, a joint secretary of the Government of India will get a basic salary of Rs 2 lakh, whereas a union secretary will get Rs 2.4 lakh (Rs 80,000 multiplied by 3) as the basic salary with effective from January 1, 2016, the date from which all Central government employees are supposed to receive their new pay. And in that calculation, the cabinet secretary will get a basic monthly salary of Rs 2.7 lakh. This is of course in addition to what the government officers get as perks — car, driver, accommodations in Lutyen’s Delhi etc. Once the government employees receive their new salary, their dearness allowance (DA) which is 113% of the basic pay now, will turn zero. The basic salary with dearness allowance for a secretary ranked officer is currently Rs 170,400 per month. So, in terms of take home, (if you also take into account the tax deduction etc.), the differences at the initial years won’t be much. But the DA in the subsequent years will be added on a higher pay scale.
If you go by the rumours, the 7th Pay Commission is likely to recommend the abolition of the Grade Pay culture, uniform 2.86 multiplication factor (a little less than 3 times hike) and unchanging of the house rent allowances. And in that formula, the basic monthly salary of a secretary will be Rs 2.28 lakh per month (higher than Rs 170,400 with current DA). Similarly, for the cabinet secretary, the monthly basic pay would be Rs 2.57 lakh (substantially higher than Rs 1.91 lakh with DA).
But the question here is why do you need a Central Pay Commission at all if the results can be as predictable as it has been shown above? No wonder, the IAS officers want a status quo of the pay formula (entry level salary of all All India Services and Group A officers is the same but as you go up, IAS and IFS get frequent promotions, thereby more pay than their colleagues in other services). The IAS Association has also apprised the the 7th Central Pay Commission panel that according to the Supreme Court judgement of 1991 (Mohan Kumar Singhania and Others vs Union of India and Others), other services should not approach the pay commissions for changing service rules/conditions.
But other services such as Indian Police Service and Indian Revenue Service have been demanding a pay parity, and even more pay. IRS-IT, for example, claims more salary for their officers than those in IAS arguing that they are now the revenue collectors for the government!

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