Monday, 11 April 2016

Did the AG Really Say That?

Dear Readers,

My inbox is flooded with questions whether what the contents of WhatApp messages attributed to the Adjutant General having said something about pay/pension in the 7th CPC regime is correct.

I was not present and the contents of the message have not been sent to me directly so that I could ascertain facts by subjecting it to the same manner in which something was attributed to the RM at an "alleged media interaction" in DSSC.

But all of us are discerning and logical thinkers, so here are some facts.

1. The recommendations of the 7th CPC have been sent by the Govt to a 13-member Empowered Committee of Secretaries (ECS) headed by the Cabinet Secretary for examination and sending recommendations to the Govt/Cabinet for consideration.

2. There has been some noise that the ECS has representation from a pantheon of all Civil services but not one representative from the Defence Forces. So the AG may not have been privy to the deliberations of the ECS.

3. Ministry of Finance (Deptt of Expenditure) is the servicing department for the ECS and has invited comments, opinions and suggestions from various Ministries through the Nodal officers (please see earlier post regarding Nodal officer for MoD).

4. The ToI and Economic Times have reported that the 3 Chiefs have (with the assistance of the AG, CoP and AoP) made presentations on certain anomalies to the Hon'ble RM, with the Defence Secretary present, on 22/23 Mar 16, and these have been forwarded to the ECS for consideration.

5. It is possible that what the AG is alleged to have stated might have been said in the discussions with the Hon'ble RM but the finality of the issues would be dependent on what the ECS recommends to the Govt/Cabinet and the subsequent decision of the Govt/Cabinet.   

6. There have also been media reports that the Hon'ble PM said on 04/05 Feb 2016 (New Indian Express) "In relief to Central government employees and pensioners, Prime Minister Narendra Modi has asked a Committee of Secretaries to accept the 7th Pay Commission’s recommendations without diluting them to provide maximum benefits to over 47 lakh government employees and 52 lakh pensioners.

The empowered committee, which was headed by Cabinet Secretary P K Sinha and comprised of  12 Secretaries, was set up on January 27 to process the recommendations of the Seventh Central Pay Commission.

A top official in the government told Express that the Committee has been asked to speed up the review so that the Cabinet can  take a decision and the 7th Pay Commission award can be released at the earliest to the employees and pensioners."

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