New Delhi, Feb 2: Central government employees pinned high hopes on Finance Minister Arun Jaitley for a hike in minimum pay and fitment factor, beyond the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission. However, they were left disappointed as Arun Jaitley made no mention of higher minimum pay, beyond the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission, in the Union Budget 2018. Also Read - 7th Pay Commission Latest News: Hike in Dearness Allowance, Dearness Relief For 50 Lakh Central Govt Employees From This Month 

Though the government officials have been saying the Centre is committed to raising minimum pay and fitment factor beyond the recommendation of the 7th Pay Commission, nothing in this regard was mentioned in the Budget. Ahead of the budget presentation, there had been reports that the government could allocate a fund to raise the salary of lower-paid employees beyond the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission. Also Read - 7th Pay Commission Latest News: Railways Offers Jobs With Huge Package, Increment | Apply Today

Speaking to a news channel, National Joint Council of Action (NJCA) chief Shiv Gopal Mishra, who is fighting for an increase in the minimum wage under 7th Pay Commission, called Arun Jaitley’s budget the most disappointing one in the last 60 years. “A large number of government employees were expecting that the government might announce an increase in minimum wage, change in fitment formula, an announcement on new pension scheme but it didn’t happen,” he said. Also Read - 7th Pay Commission Latest News Today: Nearly Five Lakh Employees of This State to Get Salary Hike From January 2021 | Check Details

Earlier, a top Finance Ministry official reportedly said that the Centre is mulling changes to the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission to raise the salary of lower-level central government employees upto the pay matrix level 5. The 7th Pay Commission recommended minimum pay Rs 18,000 per month while the maximum pay from Rs 2.5 lakh. However, the central government employees have been demanding to raise minimum pay to Rs 26,000 and fitment factor 3.68 times.

On June 30, 2016, a day after the Cabinet cleared the 7th Pay Commission recommendations, Arun Jaitley had assured central government employees unions that their demand of raising minimum pay would be considered. However, it seems that the central government employees will now have to wait further for higher minimum pay.