Monday, July 28, 2008

Pay panel award likely in August

New Delhi, July 28: The government could announce the implementation of the Sixth Pay Commission proposals as early as next month, highly placed sources said today.
A 13-member committee of secretaries, headed by cabinet secretary K.M. Chandrasekhar, screening the proposals is said to be “at the fag end” of the process. Over 3.3 million government employees are expecting a hike. The pay panel had submitted its report on March 24.
The committee screening the pay panel’s suggestions was formed at the insistence of Prime Minister Manmohan Singh following complaints from several quarters. Its report will be submitted to the cabinet.
The screening committee also includes the revenue and secretaries in the finance ministry, the home secretary, the defence secretary and the special secretary (internal security) in the home ministry. The secretaries of the departments of personnel and training, pension and pensioners’ welfare are also its members.
Work on the recommendations could have been wrapped up faster but the government’s focus has been diverted in the past few days to terror in the wake of the back-to-back serial blasts in Bangalore and Ahmedabad. The preoccupation with the strikes could also delay social projects and reforms the Centre wants to push with greater vigour after winning the trust vote on July 22.
Other legislations from which the focus has shifted include a bill on social security for unorganised sector workers. The review of welfare schemes like the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, the Integrated Child Development Scheme and the 15-point programme for minorities could also be delayed, the sources said.

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