New Delhi, May 17: The National Joint Council of Action (NJCA), leading the negotiation over pending 7th Pay Commission allowances, has demanded the government to hike the allowances by May 31. The consolidated body of employee union could launch a protest if government fails to implement the allowance hike by end of the month, said NJCA convenor Shiv Gopal Mishra.

“Central government employees are anguished. How long should the employees wait? We definitely not remain silent if the decision on allowances is not taken shortly. We are waiting till May 31. We would most likely protest if the allowance hike would be further delayed,” the NJCA chief said while speaking to India.com.

The possibility of a protest could not be ruled even if the allowances are hiked, but the demands of NJCA not taken into consideration. “We will discuss each and every detail at JCM (Joint Consultative Machinery) meeting. We would act in the interest of employees,” Mishra added.

However, the veteran unionist denied the possibility of reviving the call for strike. “We will not resort to a strike. There are other organised methods as well to protest and compel the government to consider our demands,” he said.

Mishra had earlier drawn flak from a section of the workforce for deferring the strike which was planned on July 11 last year. On being asked whether he regretted the decision later, Mishra replied, “Whatever decision taken was not taken in the air. We held discussion with our cadres on the ground. I still believe that the decision to defer the agitation was in the interest of employees. Confrontation would only delay our cause. I would be pained if I have to revive the call for strike.”

The allowance hike for central government employees is being reviewed by the Empowered Committee of Secretaries. The panel headed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha would review the recommendations made by Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa. The meeting of E-CoS is scheduled next week, Mishra said.