New Delhi, Apr 4: Even though the government had said that it was not considering a hike in minimum pay and fitment factor beyond the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission or 7th CPC, a report claimed salary of central government employees is likely to be revised before the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. The BJP government may announce a substantial hike in salary beyond the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission in a bid to retain power in 2019 Lok Sabha polls.

Apart from hiking salary beyond the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission, the government may also raise the retirement age of all central government employees. All BJP-ruled states would then follow the suit and announce salary hike employees ahead of polls. Recently, the BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh raised the retirement age to 62 years from the current 60. Jawaharlal Nehru was the first prime minister to have increased the retirement age from 55 to 58 after the 1962 war with China.

“Ahead of general elections next year, the BJP-led central government is mulling to implement the pay hike for central government employees,” a senior government official told The Sen Times. “Besides, the government will also consider raising the retirement age of all central government employees from the present 60 to 62 years. The decisions may be taken to achieve the aim at luring central government employees to turn voters in support of BJP,” he added.

the government recently clarified and said it was not considering to raise minimum pay and fitment factor beyond recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission. “The minimum pay of Rs.18,000/- p.m. and fitment factor of 2.57 are based on the specific recommendations of the 7th Central Pay Commission in the light of the relevant factors taken into account by it. Therefore, no change therein is at present under consideration,” Minister of State Finance, P Radhakrishnan told Rajya Sabha in a written reply.

The reply came in response to a question posed by Samajwadi Party MP Neeraj Shekhar. Shekhar had sought to know “whether Government is actively contemplating to increase minimum pay from Rs.18,000/- to Rs.21,000/- and fitment factor from 2.57 to 3, in view of resentment among Central Government employees over historically lowest increase in pay by 7th Central Pay Commission (CPC).” The development suggests that there is not much hope for higher minimum pay.

The government had approved recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission on a hike in salary of central government employees in June 2016. The 7th Pay Commission raised minimum pay from Rs 7,000 to Rs 18,000 month. Since then, the central government employees have been asking to raise minimum pay to Rs 26,000 and fitment factor 3.68 times from 2.57 times.