7th Pay Commission Latest News: While the New Year ringed in for several Central Government employees on a happy note, it brought disappointment for several others. A decision by the Finance Ministry has left the armed forces in a lurch. The news comes at a time when over 50 lakh Central Government employees are waiting for government’s nod to a hike in minimum pay and fitment factor beyond 7th Pay Commission (7th CPC) recommendations.

(7th Pay Commission Good News)

If reports are to be believed, the Centre has rejected the demand for a higher Military Service Pay (MSP) by armed forces. The decision has left over 1.12 lakh military personnel disappointed. These 1.12 lakh military personnel include 87,646 Junior Commissioned Officers (JCOs), along with 25,434 personnel of Navy and Indian Air Force (IAF).

The ‘very anguished’ Army headquarters will seek the immediate review of this decision by the Finance Ministry, reported PTI.

Notably, the MSP for the military personnel was introduced recognising their unique service conditions and hardships. The demand was to increase the monthly MSP from Rs 5,500 to Rs 10,000 and the total annual financial outgo would have been Rs 610 crore if the government had accepted the demand.

The seventh Pay Commission had fixed Rs 5,200 as MSP per month for JCOs and jawans while putting it at Rs 15,500 for officers between Lieutenant-rank and Brigadier-rank. The Army has been pressing for granting an higher MSP to the JCOs, arguing that they are gazetted officers (Group B) and play a very vital role in command and control structure of the force.

The MSP was first introduced by the 6th Pay Commission, accounting for compensation for intangible aspects of military service. It accounts for a range of “hardships and disadvantages” which cannot be evaluated while assessing pay comparability.

Meanwhile, over 50 lakh Central Government employees and an equivalent number of retirees, who are seeking a hike in minimum pay and fitment factor beyond 7th Pay Commission recommendations, may not get to hear a good news anytime soon. If reports are to be believed, Minister of State for Finance P Radhakrishnan has again claimed that the Centre is not mulling over the proposal for an increase of 3.68 times from 2.56 times in fitment factor for the Central Government employees.

Earlier in March 2018, he had made it clear that the Centre is not considering a raise the minimum pay and fitment factor of 50 lakh Central Government beyond 7th Pay Commission recommendations.