FLASH

Saturday, February 25, 2017

NCCPA Circular and Staff Side Secretary's letter to Government on Option 1 and NPS


NATIONAL CO-ORDINATION COMMITTEE OF PENSIONERS.
Website: nccpahq.blogspot.in.

13C, Feroze Shah Road,
 New Delhi. 110 001
20.02.2017

President:                           Com. Shiv Gopal Misra.
Secretary General:          Com. K.KN. Kutty.


Dear Comrade,
On 10th February 2017, the Sub Committee 3 met the Staff Side JCM. As you are aware, the Government had set up a committee to streamline the NPS on the recommendations of the 7th  CPC. On a plain reading of the 7th CPC comments on NPS. It would be evident that the commission wanted the Govt to go into various grievances/ complaints raised by the stake-holders. The Commission had pointedly referred to the pension(Contributory) System prevalent in various other countries and the need for a minimum guarantee on the investments. The Staff Side had therefore nursed the hope that though the contributory system may not be scrapped the Govt. might bring about necessary changes so that the subscribers would be able to have a minimum guaranteed pension. In fact the official side had assured  the S/s in an earlier meeting that the benefit of annuity would not be less than the earlier defined pension benefit.. In other words they had expressed that the annuity would be more than 50% of the last Pay drawn. The Parliamentary Committee, which considered the PFRDA bill had opined that the subscribers must be provided with such a guarantee. The committee was headed by Shri. Yeswant Sinha , former Finance Minister and BJP MP. The UPA II Govt. rejected this demand while passing the Bill for which BJP voted in favour. Despite all these happenings one    still  nurses the  hope. That is what optimism is all about.

In the first meeting of the committee chaired   by the secondary Pension, Staff Side was given an opportunity along with many others to present their case. There had been many who had gate crashed into that meeting, mostly the Associations representing all India and organised Group A services. Every one of the spoke and spoke elaborately of the various facets and defects of the Scheme, but not suggesting   any  remedial  measures. To a specific quarry, the spokesperson of the Finance Ministry categorically stated that no guaranteed minimum pension could be stipulated and quoted the provisions to that effect in the Act itself. In our last circular we had enclosed the copy of the submissionsmade by the Staff Side.  During the deliberations of the Sub Committee 3 also Staff side has presented its views on various queries raised by the official side. A copy of the Staff Side letter is enclosed. The official side has made it categorically clear  that it was not in their province to make any changes in the basic features of NPS and therefore no guaranteed pension or  annuity  could be offered.

The significant feature of the discussion was as to how to import the punitive provisions of the CCS(pension) Rules 1972, when an individual employee is proceeded against under the CCS(CCA) Rules. The Staff Side has categorically and emphatically pointed out that the contributory Pension Scheme is a financial transaction   between the employer and  the employee and the money so collected stands  transferred to the investment company, with clear  instructions on the pattern of  investment.  In that situation, it would not be possible for any party to amend or rescind any of the instructions issued to the investment company or withhold the proceeds thereof.  The sub-committee will now make over its report in all probability without giving any cognizance of the staff side view as they have done in the case of Option No. 1

As we had indicated in our earlier communication, in the case of option No. 1 which has been rejected by the pension Department stating the most untenable argument of infeasibility, we are left with no option but to knock at the doors of courts. As a preliminary measure we must now collect the names of those persons who would stand to benefit if option No.1 is implemented. Before we decide to file the  Secretariat of NCCPA will discuss the matter and will take appropriate decision.

In the meantime as you are aware the CGEs under the banner of Confederation will be on Strike on 16.03.2017 inter alia  raising  the issue of Option No.1 and NPS. We must express our solidarity and support to the striking workers. We may suggest that in all state capitals the affiliates of NCCPA may jointly organise demonstrate in front of an identified Central Government office by wearing badges with the following inscription on it.

Allow Option 1. For Pension Fixation
Exclude CGEs from NPS

With greetings,
Yours fraternally,

Sd/-
K.K.N.Kutty
Secretary General.


Copy of letter from the Secretary staff Side to the Chairman, Sub-Committee III of NPS Committee.

No.NC-JCM-2016/Pension (NPS)              -  February 10, 2017

The Chairman,
Sub-Committee III on NPS
Dept of Pension & Pensioners’ Welfare
3rd Floor, Lok Nayak Bhawan, Khan Market,
New Delhi

Dear Sir,

Thank you very much for your letter No 57/2016-P&PW(B) dated 31st January 2017 and the decision to reschedule the meeting at our request.

We find from your letter cited that the Committee set up by the Government to streamline the NPS has delegated the task to different Sub-Committees and we are before the Sub-Committee No III. Since the identified task of each subcommittee is not made known, nor even as to how such many sub committees are set up, we may not be able to make a comprehensive presentation on NPS. On 20th January 2017, we had made a written presentation of our views in the matter. We attach the said letter to this communication and reiterate the views conveyed therein. 

1.            The entire Central and State Govt Employees of the Country must be excluded                 from the purview of the NPS and consequently of PFRDA Act for the elaborate reasons mentioned in our Memorandum to 7 CPC.  The National Pension                Scheme which is based on defined mandatory contribution from the employees was introduced without causing any consultation with the employees organizations in the JCM forum and amounts to unilateral and arbitrary                 withdrawal of an existing benefit, which is clearly impermissible.  We give hereunder our comments on each of the issues raised in the letter  cited.

2.            Without compromising on the above position,. We request that benefits defined under the CCS (Pension) Rules, 1972 as amended on date must be the pension                 and other entitlements in the case of all Central And State Govt. employees. In other words, every employee who retires after completion of 20 years of service must be given -

Pension @50% of the last pay drawn or average emoluments of the last               10 months whichever is beneficial to the employee along with the appropriate Dearness Relief, subject to the minimum pension under the Rules as is amended from time to time.

On his death as Pensioner, family members shall be entitled to family    Pension, subject to the specified minimum amount of family pension,           stipulated by the Government from time to time along with appropriate Dearness Relief. Besides, all persons on retirement will be entitled to Gratuity as specified under extant Rules.

(A)                Framing of rules on service matters of NPS employees including the following:

(i)            Provision of an option for entitlements under old pension scheme on death,      disability or invalidation during service

There cannot be a provision for option. The stipulation of pensionary benefit afforded under the extant rules / CCS(Pension) Rules be extended to them. The provisional pension benefit orders issued by the Govt. is to be continued or made permanent.

Family for the purpose of payment of annuity

Family definition must be as is provided for the present CCS (Pension) Rules
(iii)          Contribution during suspension, extra ordinary leave (i.e. leave without              pay),      unauthorized absence

Contribution during suspension : 10% of the subsistence allowance and Govt. contributes 10% of the entitled full salary
Extra Ordinary leave – No contribution
Unauthorized absence – No contribution

iv)           Entitlements/deductions on dismissal / removal during service
Entitlement/deduction on dismissal/removal during service – Return of the Contributions made by the official and the Govt on his behalf.

If he purchases an annuity by investing the funds so received,  the said annuity must not be in any case less than 1/3rd of the last  pay drawn by the dismissed/removed official.

(v)          Withholding of NPS funds due to departmental / judicial proceedings pending at              the time of retirement.

Neither the Pension fund be withheld nor the entitled defined benefit pension. In other words, pension must be delinked from any disciplinary proceedings.

(vi)         Departmental proceedings after retirement for the alleged misconduct during service

It must not have any bearing on the Pension entitlements of an official who is subscriber to NPS

(vii)        Withholding of annuity on account of future misconduct

Does not deserve any comment

(viii)       Voluntary retirement of NPS employees

Voluntary retirement is presently afforded after 20 years of service. Therefore, the official will be entitled for full pension

(ix)         Commercial employment of  NPS employees after retirement.

Must not have any bearing on pension entitlement.

B.            Provision of GPF for the NPS employees

May be provided as a voluntary option to all officials.

Thanking You,

                 Yours faithfully,
Sd/-
(Shiva Gopal Mishra)

Secretary

Saturday, January 21, 2017

NCCPA Circular and NJCA Correspondences with the Government!

NATIONAL CO-ORINATION COMMITTEE
OF PENSIONERS ASSOCIATIONS.
13/c  Feroze shah  Road,
New Delhi. 110 001
Dated: 20-01-2017.

Dear Comrades,

We give hereunder a brief note over the developments that have taken place in last 2-3 months.

1.    Pension determination formula: 7th CPC.

Despite our best efforts, we have not been able to carry conviction  with the Pension Department to act up on the 7th CPC recommendation pertaining to  Option No.1. This has crashed the hope and aspiration nurtured by a large no of pensioners especially after the 7th CPC report was out. The JCM Staff Side had,  as you are aware,  held meetings with Department of Pension when an  alternate suggestion was mooted by the official side. As  the alternative suggestion will indeed  benefit a section of Pensioners, we requested that the same may be taken as the 3rd option. It is now clear   that the Pension department has submitted its report rejecting option No.1 as infeasible to the cabinet and the Cabinet assent is awaited.. In this situation we feel that all affiliated associations and federations must advise their units to hold Demonstration on 15th February 2017 and send the following communication to the (1) Honourable Prime Minister, (2) Honourable Minister of State for Personnel, (3) Honourable Finance Minister, (4) Cabinet Secretary,  (5) Secretary Pension, Department of Pension and Pensioner Welfare, and (6) The Secretary, Department of Personnel and Training.  We have appended to this letter the format of the communications to be sent to the Prime Minister and others.

2.    One day Token Strike on 16th March, 2017 by the Confederation and its affiliates.

As you aware the Confederation had earlier decided to Organize a one day strike on 15.02.2017 in view of thee total inaction on the part of the Govt. to honour the agreement reached with the Staff side JCM on 30th June 2016 and  confirmed in writing on 06.07.2016. The said one day strike has been now postponed to 16.03.2017 on account of the declaration of Election schedules by the Election Commission for the States of UP, UK, Goa, Manipur and Punjab. The Present NDA Government has exhibited the worst anti-employee attitude.  Not a single issue projected by the JCM Staff side on behalf of the pensioners and employees was considered favorably.  In the name of consideration of the demands, the allowances  have been withheld to be implemented.  All the Committees set up by the Government in the wake of the 7th CPC recommendations had only been indulging in dilatory tactics and no worthwhile negotiations  was held  with the employees organisations. It was in this background that  the the National JCA met on 17.1.2017 at Delhi. Though the revival of the deferred strike action was discussed no final decision could be taken. The leader and Secretary have now been requested to interact with the Hon’ble Ministers and reconvene the NJCA once again. The letters written in this regard by Secretary Staff side are enclosed.

3.    NPS Committee.

The Govt. has setup a committee as per the recommendation of the 7th CPC to streamline the NPS  in view of the plethora of complaints lodged against it  by the stoke holders before the Commission.. The first meeting of the said committee was held on 20th January 2016. The written submissions made by the Staff side Secretary are enclosed. It is likely that the committee will hear the Staff side once again.  In order to enable the Staff side to submit an elaborate memorandum it has been decided that a meeting of all the National Council members must be held soon.  We have also been requested to present our proposal for consideration and incorporation.  To enable us to submit a cogent and well prepared document, we request you to kindly send us your suggestions in the matter before 5th Feb. 2017. 

With greetings,
Yours fraternally,


K.K.N.Kutty
Secretary General.

Format of the letter to be addressed to the Honourable Prime Minister and Others.



To

The Hon’ble Prime Minister
Government of India,
South Block,
New Delhi. 110 001.


Respected Sir,

On behalf of the Pensioners, who are our members, we are to bring to your kind notice that the Central Government pensioners throughout the country are extremely distressed on coming to know that the Pension and Pensioners Welfare Department of the Government of India has finalized and made their submissions to the Cabinet suggesting inter alia that the recommendation made by the 7th CPC in respect of pension determination under Option No. 1. be rejected on the specious ground that the said recommendation is infeasible to be acted upon. 

In this connection we send herewith a copy of the submissions made by the Staff Side of the JCM on our behalf which may please be considered before a final decision in the matter is taken by the Cabinet.  For the detailed reasons advanced in the said Note, the decision of the Department of Pension to reject the said recommendations, even though the same has been accepted by the Government and notified, is not only unfortunate but also not tenable.  The said suggestion of the Department of Pension, if acted upon, will crush the hope and aspiration generated in the minds of lakhs of pensioners for a reasonable pension, which the 7th CPC considered and granted. 

We, therefore, appeal to your good self that the proposal of the Pension Department, which is presently pending consideration of the Cabinet, may not be accepted and instead the recommendation of the 7th CPC granting option No.1 be acted upon.

Thanking you,

Yours faithfully,


Name:
Designation:

Copy of letter addressed to Shri Rajnath Singh, Honourable Home Minister by Com. Shivgopal Misra, Secretary, Staff Side, JCM. Dated 17th Jan. 2017.

Dear Sir,

We solicit your kind reference to the discussion the Staff Side delegation had with you and your esteemed colleagues in the Cabinet – Hon’ble Finance Minister, Railway Ministers – on 3oth June 206 and subsequently with your good self on 6th July 2016. In the light of the assurance held out for reconsideration of the minimum wage and multiplication factor through the setting up of a high level committee within a time frame of four months, the National JCA had deferred the strike action which was to commence from 11.07.2016.

We had been patiently waiting for a meaningful discussion in the matter ever since then. Not only there had been not any worthwhile or meaningful discussions thereafter but no settlement was also brought about till today though more than six months have been elapsed.

The National JCA met yesterday (17-01-2017) and almost all members expressed extreme disappointment over the turn of events. However, they felt that a meeting with your good self must be sought to sort out the issue amicably.

We shall therefore be grateful if you can indicate a date and time convenient to you, so that the undersigned along with Dr. M Raghaviah, the Leader of Staff Side, JCM could call on you with a view to explore reaching an agreement. Incidentally, we feel that it must be our responsibility to convey to you that the Central Govt Employees throughout the country are extremely critical of the fact that the Government had not found it possible to accept even a single issue taken up by the Staff Side, JCM after the 7th CPC submitted its recommendations to the Government. This apart, the CG Pensioners numbering presently more than the working employees are aggrieved of the fact that the one and only recommendation of the 7th CPC which was in their favour  i.e. option No.1 have been recommended to be rejected by the Pension Department to the Government.

Expecting a communication for an early meeting and thanking you


     Yours faithfully

(Shiva Gopal Mishra)
  Secretary



Copy of letter addrtessed to the Secretary Pension, Lok Nayak Bhawan, Khan Market, by the Secretary Staff Side on 20th January, 2017.

The Chairman,
NPS Committee
Deptt. Of Pension & Pensioners’ Welfare
3rd Floor, Lok Nayak Bhawan,
New Delhi

Sub:-   Meeting of the Committee constituted to suggest measures for           streamliningthe implementation of the NPS for Central Govt Employees –         Reg.

Ref:     Letter No 57/1/2016-P&PW(B) dated 16th January 2017

Sir,

Kindly refer to your aforementioned letter.  At the outset we request you to kindly favour us with a copy of the Government Notification setting up the Committee to make suggestions to streamline the National Pension system for Central Government employees.  This is needed for us to understand the scope and ambit of the functioning of the Committee.

The 7th CPC in their report in paras 10.3.11 to 10.3.25 has enumerated the plethora of complaints received by it over the NPS and has finally recommended to the Government to set up a Committee to look into those issues and address.   However, we are constrained to believe from the reading of para  3 of the letter cited that the Committee is likely to have only a perfunctory consultation with the stake holders on an important issue like this. 

In any case, we give hereunder our views in the matter with the fervent hope that the Committee will consider it within the time constraints.

We are of the firm view that the Central Government employees as a whole must be fully excluded from the ambit of the defined contributory pension scheme for otherwise it would create two classes amongst them, one making subscription; and another making no subscription but receiving a better pension and other retirement benefits.

There is no justification for the Government to deduct pension contribution from the Central Government employees, even as per the recommendation of the 7th CPC they are provided with far lesser Minimum wage that what it should have been as per the norms of Dr. Aykroyd formula, approved by the 15th ILC and subsequent judgment of the Supreme Court.

This apart, we were assured by the Government during the Standing Committee meeting discussions held on 14.12.2007 that

“for employees who had entered with effect from 1.1.2004 are not likely to be worse off vis a vis the current pension system in force as the replacement rate would match to the present one.  Thus NPS is a win-win situation for employees and the Government”

Without deviating even an iota from our firm position enumerated in No. 1 above,  the least the Government must do to honour the assurance given  earlier is to guarantee that all Central Govt. employees who are recruited with effect from 1.1.2004 and have thus become mandatory subscribers to the NPS receive all benefits of pension, family pension and other retirement benefits as is provided for under the CCS(Pension) Rules applicable to the Central Government employees who are recruited prior to 1.1.2004.

To illustrate the point that the Central Government employees, who are recruited with effect from 1.1.2004 are provided with a paltry in the form of pension in total disregard to the assurance held out by the Government on 14.12.2007 we enclose herewith the details of pension entitlement computed in the case of a person, who was recruited after 1.1.2004 and retired after 12 years of service in one of the Ordnance factories under the Ministry of Defence. This person is being paid a paltry amount of Rs 960/= p.m. as pension from NPS, whereas after the implementation of the 7 CPC recommendations the minimum pension is Rs 9000/- + DA p.m. with effect from 01-01-2016.

In fine, we feel that it would be better if the Committee could convene a meeting as is convenient to all its members so that a full-fledged discussion could be held on this vital issue which is of utmost importance to a large segment of employees recruited after 01-01-2004 whose number is increasing day by day.

Thanking you

Yours Sincerely


(Shiva Gopal Mishra)
          Secretary



















Sunday, November 20, 2016

NCCPA Circular

NCCPA Circular!

Pl find the latest circular covering developments:


NATIONAL CO-ORDINATION COMMITTEE OF PENSIONERS.
Website: nccpahq.blogspot.in.

13.c Feroze Shah Road,m
 New Delhi. 110 001
Dated:20.11.2016.
Dear Comrades,
This is to inform you that the pension department has ultimately taken a final decision not to allow the option No.1. There are only two options left out for us.  To approach the judiciary and to agitate. We are to embrace both.

Bharath Pensioners Samaj had its General Body meeting on 13th November, 2016.  Both the President of NCCPA and the undersigned attended the inaugural session and addressed the delegates.  They have taken the decision to pursue the pension fitment issue through agitation.  We have assured them of our co-operation.  We have written a letter in this regard.  The copy of the same is enclosed. 

The AIRF has decided to organise  a protest demonstration on 14.12.2016.  The Confederation of CGE and workers have decided to organise a rally and march to parliament on 15.12.2016.  These programmes are  to oppose the totally nugatory attitude of the present Government over the Central Government employees Demands.  The affiliates of NCCPA may kindly advise their members to take part in these action programmes.

There will be a meeting with the Secretary Health soon to discuss the CGHS problems. All affiliates and state units are once again requested to send us Note indicating the various difficulties faced by the members in each State. 

The Government has extended the life certificate date to January, 2017.

The Secretry Staff  Side and the undersigned have written to the Government to disburse the salary for the months of November and December 2016 in cash. 

The annual GB meeting of the AP Unit is slated to be held on 12th and 13th December, 2016. 
We are approaching Associations/Federations of both working and retired employees, who are affected by the New Contributory pension scheme for holding a massive convention at Delhi.  As and when the date for the convention is decided, we shall intimate you.

The allowance committee set up by the Government and headed by the Secretary Expenditure did not meet the staff side formally after  the Staff Side submitted its detailed explanatory memorandum on each of the allowances the Pay Commission has recommended to abolish. The specified time limit under which the committee is to submit its report is over.  The Fixed Medical Allowance  which are presently paid to the pensioners who are not covered by CGHS is under the consideration of the Committee.

We are getting in touch with the Nagpur and Allahabad State Units to explore the possibility of holding the next National Executive Committee meeting of NCCPA 

With greetings,

Yours fraternally,

K.KN. Kutty.




NATIONAL CO-ORDINATION COMMITTEE OF PENSIONERS.
Website: nccpahq.blogspot.in.

13.c Feroze Shah Road,m
 New Delhi. 110 001

Shri S.C. Maheswari,
General Secretary,
Bharat Pensioners Samaj
New Delhi. 

Dear Comrade,

            Kindly refer to the telephonic conversation we had on the subject of organising a rally/dharna at Jantar Mantar in the last week of Feb or in the first week of March 2017 to pursue the demand to implement the recommendation of the 7th CPC in respect of pension fitment under option No.1.  We had the matter discussed amongst us .  We welcome the initiative taken by you in the matter and we assure you of our whole hearted co-operation and participation.

            We feel that in order to ensure large scale participation of pensioners in the programme, it would be better if you could convene a meeting of Secretaries of all Pensioners organisations at Delhi  on a date convenient to you.  We may finalise the date for the programme in consultation with all at the proposed meeting. We further request that such a meeting may please be held not later than the middle of December. 2016.   I would be at Delhi on 30th November, 2016 and again on 13th December to 16th December, 2016. 

            With greetings,
Yours fraternally,

K.KN. Kutty
Secretary General









Tuesday, October 18, 2016

NCCPA CIRCULAR & NJCA REACTION ON OPTION NUMBER 1 & MINUTES OF HIGH LEVEL COMMITTEE



NATIONAL CO-ORDINATION COMMITTEE OF PENSIONERS ASSOCIATIONS 

13.c Feroze Shah Road,
 New Delhi. 110 001

President:                           Com. Shiv Gopal Misra.
Secretary General:          Com. K.KN. Kutty.

Dear Comrades,

As you aware the Government had set up a Committee to go into the feasibility of implementation of 7th CPC recommendations concerning pension determination of pre-2016 pensioners/ family pensioners. The committee itself came into being due to the persistent postulations of the Pension department over the probable difficulties, the Department might encounter in fixing pension entitlement under option No.1 , recommended by 7th CPC. The first formal meeting was held on 6.10.2016 with the JCM Staff Side.  Prior to that, we have been informed that the pension department had invited some pensioners Associations for a discussion on the same subject.  We are not aware of what ultimately transpired  in that meeting.

In the 6th October meeting the official side virtually   reiterated what they said in the  informal meeting about the difficulties in acting upon the Option No.1. suggested by the 7th CPC, the anomalies it might create etc. To overcome  and obviate the difficulties they proposed  an alternative. i.e. to extend the pension fixation formula propounded  by 5th CPC to all pre 2016 pensioners  and family pensioners. Viz. arriving at notional pay in 7th CPC by applying the formula for pay revision for serving employees in each Pay Commission and consequent pension fixation)  

We have annexed the full text of minutes of the meeting of 6th October 2016. The minutes as you know well, can not reflect the entire gamut of discussions at the meeting. The Staff Side had made out the following points during the discussions.

(a)   Even assuming that in about 18% of the cases service Books might not be available, it cannot be the  reason to conclude that  implementation of option No. 1 is infeasible. In fact it construes that in 82% of the cases, the service books are available and for that reason alone, the option suggested by the 7th CPC is to be acted upon. Moreover, the Staff Side also said that hardily 40% of pensioners are likely to opt for  option No. 1 .  In that  case, only  in 7%  of the cases the non availability of Service Books will arise.
(b)   As the Government has accepted the recommendation (as indicated in the Notification issued),  what is required by the Committee is only to examine the feasibility thereof.
(c)    There are various other documents on which the Government can  rely  upon like the Gradation list,(Seniority list),  Pay Bill, Establishment file etc. The Gradation list, the staff side added  contains all information. Including the date of promotion of the concerned individual to that grade.

(d)   Staff Side also agreed that acting upon option No.1 will bring about certain anomalies and the same must be addressed.

(e)   The depressed pension entitlement of those who retired without promotion, or who suffered stagnation in service, for no fault of theirs, especially the Group C and Group D employees must be appreciated.
(f)     The Staff Side said that they wholeheartedly welcome  the alternative proposal i.e. extension of the 5th CPC pension fitment formula to all pre-2016 pensioners  as that had been their demand in the memorandum submitted to the 7th CPC itself.
(g)   The staff side  however, reminded the members of the Committee that the  extension of the 5th CPC pension fitment formula had been the demand of the pensioners and the staff side before the 6th CPC.  It was rejected on the specious plea of higher financial outflow.
(h)   nIn the light of the anomalies that might arise in accepting the 7th CPC recommendation of Option No. 1, it is better, that the Government offers the same as third option, to be chosen by the pensioners on the basis of whichever is beneficial to them. 
(i)      At the end of the discussion, the  staff side said that they would cause consultation with all state holders and will express their firm view  at the next meeting which was stated for 17th  October, 2016.

In the brief period that was available, the Staff Side did cause consultation with various Pensioners Association  and Federations and Associations of Serving employees.   That apart, the undersigned had a detailed discussion with Com. B.C. Maheswari, General Secretary Bharath Pensioners Samaj, one of the biggest pensioners organization in the country.

The staff Side met yesterday evening and the matter was  further discussed  at length with the feedback, it had received from various organizations as also from the Government.  It came to the inescapable conclusion that replacement of Option No.1. by the alternate suggestion put forth by the Committee would harm the interest of quite a large number of pensioners/family pensioners, especially those who had retired prior to 1996.  The meeting also appreciated the fact that the implementation of Option No.1. will bring about a situation of anomalies in pension entitlement especially for those pensioners, who got their promotion at the fag end of their career.  They are likely to get lesser pension when compared to a pensioner who retired from a lower grade. Taking all these into consideration, the Staff Side decided that the alternative suggested by the Committee must be a third alternative which might reduce the gravity of anomaly and would bring about a better pension entitlement for certain section of the pensioners.  Accordingly, the decision has been conveyed to the Committee (both orally and in writing).  The copy of the letter the Staff Side has written is appended hereto.
 
During the discussions on 17th  it has become almost clear that the Committee would go ahead with the proposal of the Pension Department denying Option No.1. which would affect adversely the pension entitlement of a significant number of pensioners/family pensioners.  Perhaps it would be the first occasion that the Government chooses to reject a recommendation made by the  Pay Commission.  With this rejection, the scenario would be complete in as much as this would be the first Government which has rejected every suggestion of the employees and Pensioners in implementation of the Pay Commission recommendation.  It has gone a step further in as much as it has tried to influence the 7th CPC at the fag end of its tenure to ensure that the minimum wage quantum is reduced.   It may please be noted that the only one recommendation of the 7th CPC which came in for some appreciation amongst the various stake holders was the Pension fitment formula i.e. Option No.1.  By its rejection, it can be concluded without difficulty that there is nothing in the 7th CPC by virtue of which the employees and pensioners could state that some improvement has been effected in their service/career conditions. 

It must be our immediate  endeavour to bring about a joint platform of all pensioners organizations to chalk out a future course of actions in pursuance of the demand of implementation of  option No.1.   
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Copy of letter in No. NC-NJCM-2016/7th CPC(Pension) from The  Secretary ,  Staff Side to

The  Secretary (pension)

Department of Pension& Pensioners Welfare,

Govt. of India,

Sardar Patel Bhawan,

New Delhi.


Dear Sir,

                                Sub:       7th CPC recommendation. Pay determination in the case of
                                                Pre-2016 pensioners. Option No. 1. Examination of feasibility.                                                    Ref:                  Minutes of the meeting of the Committee in F.No. 38/37/2016
 P&PW(A)Dated 10th October, 2016

 We refer to the discussions held on 6.10.2016 in the matter of feasibility of acting upon the 7thy CPC recommendations (Option No. 1) in the matter of pension computation  and the minutes circulated under cover of the letter cited.   At the outset, we would like to state that the members of the Staff Side, who were associated with the discussions, gained an impression that the Pension Department would not like to implement the recommendation of the 7th CPC concerning Option No. 1 provided to the Pensioners in determination of the revised pension. As has been pointed out by us during the discussions on 6th October, the Government has accepted the said recommendation with a rider of its feasibility of implementation.  The attempt, therefore, must be to explore the ways and means of implementing the said recommendation, which benefits a large number of retired personnel, especially those retired prior to 1996. It is, therefore, highly doubtful how any alternate proposal in replacement of the accepted recommendation would be tenable. 

We have the matter considered by various Pensioners Associations as also the Federations of the Serving employees. We enumerate hereunder  the  feed- back we have received:

Even according to the exercise carried out by the Pension department, only in 18% of the cases, the service Books are reported to have been not available. Conversely it means that in 82% of the cases the records are available to operationalize option No.1. Besides, we find that on the basis of a random scrutiny that only 40% (Percentage  varies   from Department to Department depending upon the then prevailing career prospects) generally will opt to have pension fixation under the  provisions of   option No.1. It will work out to hardly 7% of the cases, where Service Books might not be available. As has been pointed out in the last meeting, Gradation/Seniority  list is maintained for each Cadre by the Concerned Department, where the date of promotion to the cadre inter alia  is indicated. The said gradation list will reveal many other details viz. the date of birth, date of entry into government service, date of promotion to the present cadre, whether eligible for next promotion, date of superannuation etc.  This apart there are several other documents maintained by the Department, which will come in handy   for verification of the clam, viz, the pay bills, Establishment files containing promotion orders etc.   In other words it is possible to verify the  claim of any individual pensioner or family pensioner and take appropriate decision.       In other words, there is no infeasibility question at all.   It was also pointed out by many organisations that the retention period of Service Books in all major Departments of the Government of India is 5 years after the death of the Pensioner/ Family Pensioner and not 3 years after retirement as indicated by the Official side at the meeting. This apart, it may also  be noted that the option has to be exercised by the concerned individual pensioner and he  has to make a formal application to the concerned authorities.  He is bound to substantiate his claim with documentary proof, whatever that is available with him. 

As was pointed out by some of us in the last meeting, the non- implementation of an accepted recommendation on the specious plea of infeasibility will pave way for plethora of litigation.  Apart from the administrative difficulties, the Pension Department would be saddled with if such litigations arise, it would be sad and cruel on the part of the Government to compel the pensioners to bear huge financial burden to pursue their case before the courts of law. 

In view of this the Staff side is   of the firm view  that the Government issue orders for implementation of Option No. 1 as there is no room for stating that the recommendation is impossible  to be implemented for those who are benefited by the said option. 

We are aware that certain anomalies are bound to arise on implementation of option No.1 Anomalies have arisen in the past too. What is needed is to examine those anomalies and ensure that those are genuinely addressed.

It may  be noted that even under the  present dispensation, no two  Government servants are entitled for the same pension despite they being retired on superannuation from the same grade on the same day. The promotion in lower cadres especially Group B, C and D had been few and far between a decade back in many  departments and continues to be the same  situation in certain organisations of the Government of India.  The vacancy based promotion system, one must admit , operates in a fortuitous manner.   For no fault of the individual employee, he/she  may retire without getting a promotion whereas his colleague due to sheer luck might get the promotion at the fag end of the career.  The case of those employees who retired prior to the advent of ACP or MACP is really pathetic.  They had to remain in certain departments in the same cadres for years together. They are in receipt of a  paltry amount of pension though there is nothing distinguishable in their service careers for such deprivation.  To deny them the benefit provided by the 7th CPC on the specious plea that the relevant records are not available with the Government may not only be  unreasonable but also will not  stand the test of judicial scrutiny .

As we have stated in the meeting, the alternative suggestion put forth by the official side  is a  welcome feature , for it might be a step in the right direction to remove the anomaly pointed out by the Official side when  Option No.1 is implemented and will benefit those pensioners who got their promotion at the fag end of their career.. It is also likely to bring about certain extent of parity, if not full, between the old and the present pensioners.    However it cannot be in replacement of the recommendation in respect of Option No.1. made by the 7th CPC.  The alternate suggestion  of  the Pension Department may be offered as another option to the pensioners who are not benefited either by Option No. 1 or 2 recommended by the 7th CPC. Such an option will eliminate to a great extent the anomalies that might arise from the implementation of option No. 1.

In fine,  we request that:

The Pensioners/family pensioners may be allowed to choose any one  of the following three options;
(a)    2.57 time of the present pension if that is beneficial.
(b)   Option No. 1. Recommended by the 7th CPC, if that is beneficial for them.
( c).  to determine the Pension on the basis of the suggestion placed by the Pension Department on 6.10.2016 i.e. extension of   the benefit of pension determination recommended by the 5th CPC (viz. arriving at notional pay in the 7th CPC by applying formula for pay revision for serving employees in each Pay Commission and consequent pension fixation)  to all pre-2016 Pensioners/family pensioners, if that becomes beneficial to them. 
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Copy of the Minutes of the meeting of the Committee set up to examine feasibility of implementation of recommendation of Seventh CPC for revision of pension of Pre-2016 pensioners held on 6.10.2016 at Sardar Patel Bhawan, New Delhi.
The 6" Meeting of the Committee for examination of feasibility of implementation of recommendations of Seventh Central Pay Commission for revision of pension of pre-2016 pensioners was held under the Chairmanship of Shri C. Viswanath, Secretary (Pension) on 6.10.2016 at Sardar Patel Bhawan, New Delhi. This meeting was called for seeking the views of the Staff side of JCM on the feasibility of implementation of  the first option for revision of pension of pre 2016 pensioners recommended by the Seventh Central Pay Commission.The following were present from official side:

Sh. Ashok Kumar Dash, Member (Personnel), Department of Posts.
Ms. Santosh, Joint Secretary, Department of Ex-Servicemen Welfare,
Sh. Rozy Agarwal, Joint CGDA, Ministry of Defence,
Sh.           R.K.      Chaturvedi,            Joint        Secretary,              Implementation    Cell, Department of Expenditure,
Sh. Sanjay Singh, Chief Controller (Pension), CPAO (representing Controller General of Accounts).
Sh. Tanveer Ahmed, Executive Director, Railway Board (representing Member (Staff)).
The following were present from JCM ( staff side):
Shr i Shiv Gopal Mishra, Secretary, JCM.
Shri  Guman Singh, Member
Shri J.R. Bhosale
Shri K.KN. Kutty
Shri C, Shrikumar
Shri R.D. Gupta.

                Welcoming the members of the Committee and the representatives of the JCM (Staff Side) Secretary ( Pension ) requested Additional Secretary(Pension) to make a presentation.
                In her presentation Addl. Secretary Pension brought out the position regarding the requirement of records and the factors which may affect the feasibility of arriving at the notional pay, in Seventh CPC by counting increments in the last scale of pay as recommended by the Pay Commission.  She also mentioned about the anomalies that are likely to arise in the process.  The presentation brought out the methodology adopted by the Committee to examine the feasibility of the first option and the finding of the committee in this regard.  She mentioned that the service records for increment method may not be available in around 18.3 percentage of the cases.  The difficulties in extracting the information from the records and determining the exact number of the increment for revision of pension under first Option were explained. She indicated that the Committee has found that the alternative method of arriving at notional pay in 7th CPC by applying formula for pay revision for serving employees in each pay commission and giving 50% of this as pension to be beneficial for all pensioners in comparison to the fitment method.

                Thereafter, Secretary Pension requested the members of the JCM staff side for their views  on the feasibility of the first option. 

                The representatives of the JCM Staff Side mentioned that in their representation to the 7th CPC, they had suggested revision of pension of pre 2006 pensioners by notional pay fixation in each successive pay commission period.  However, the Pay Commission recommended the revision of pension by fixing the notional pay on the basis of the increments earned in the last post. 

                The JCM Staff Side mentioned that the Cabinet has approved revision of pension by the first option(increment method), if its implementation is found feasible after examination by the committee.   They mentioned that in additional to the Service book, or personal file, the details of increments earned can be ascertained from the gradation/seniority list issued by the departments from time to time.  Therefore,  one cannot say that the first option recommended by the Pay Commission is not feasible on the ground of the non availability of records.  In regard to the perceived anomalies, the Staff Side stated that anomalies arose in implementation of the recommendations of all previous pay commissions.  Such anomalies can always be rectified through the mechanism of Anomaly Committee.
                On the alternative method of revision of pension by notional pay fixation  in each Pay Commission the staff Side felt that the pensioners who are likely to get higher benefits by increments method may not accept revision of pension  by pay fixation method.  This may, therefore, lead to litigation.
                After detailed discussion,  the staff side sought time to consider the alternative method of fixation of notional pay in each intervening pay commission for revision of pension as on 1.1.2016 before submitting their final views in this regard.  It was accordingly decided to have another meeting with the JCM staff side on 17.10.2016 at 10.00AM.  The meeting ended with a vote of thanks to the Chair.
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