SEPARATE PAY COMMISSION FOR ARMED FORCES

As a New Year gift to armed forces, the government has announced a separate pay commission for the defence personnel. Prime Minister’s Office has sent a letter to the Defence Ministry stating that this will not be part of the civilian pay panel.

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As a New Year gift to armed forces, the government has announced a separate pay commission for the defence personnel. Prime Minister’s Office has sent a letter to the Defence Ministry stating that this will not be part of the civilian pay panel. The PMO has also agreed in principle to the demand for placing 12,000 odd Lieutenant Colonels and equivalents in Navy and Air Force in the pay band four of the Sixth Central Pay Commission. However, this comes with a rider. The PMO clarified that the pay band four statuses with a grade pay of Rs 8000 would be accorded only to those Lieutenant Colonels who were performing a combat role or were ready for combat. Those Lieutenant Colonels on deputation to other services would receive the pay band four statuses only when they return to their parent service. Another demand accepted by the PMO concerned the jawans, for whom the government would restore the 70 per cent pensioner weightage. But, all of these benefits do not come for free. The PMO is playing safe this time around. It has decided to set up a high powered committee to review the command and control functions, and the status of the armed forces vis-à-vis that of their civilian and paramilitary counterparts.