Islamabad: The government has announced a 10 per cent increase in salaries and pensions of government employees for the 2016-17 fiscal while raising the minimum wage by Rs1,000 from the current figure of Rs13,000.
In another move to overcome the perception of not being generous to government employees, the Pakistan Muslim League-Nawaz has decided to merge two ad-hoc allowances added to the pay scale of civil servants in 2013 and 2014.
But what would benefit hundreds of thousands of government servants more is the move to upgrade several lower cadres from the upcoming fiscal year.
More than half way through its tenure, the PML-N could have faced political ramifications by not pacifying government employees and the agriculture sector in the budget. With the inflation rate below three per cent, the government is hoping for positive political dividends.
An amount of Rs57 billion has been reserved in the next year’s budget to meet the announced measures in pays and pensions.
In addition to these incentives, the minimum wage has been increased from Rs13,000 to Rs14,000 – a measure that needs strict implementation through labour laws.
Disabled persons working in federal government departments would also be entitled to an additional conveyance allowance of Rs1,000 from the next financial year.
On Friday, the finance minister announced the 10 per cent ad-hoc relief allowance on running basic pay of all government employees from July 1 and to merge the two ad-hoc allowances given by the last PPP regime.
While pensions of all retired government employees have been increased by 10 per cent, those above 85 years of age will enjoy a 25 per cent raise. Ex-gratia pension allowed to former East Pakistan employees will be raised from Rs2,000 to Rs6,000. If the person has died, his family will now get Rs4,500 against the earlier Rs1,000.
For pensioners and senior citizens, the upper limit of investment in National Savings Bahbood certificates has been increased from Rs4 million to Rs5 million.
From the new fiscal, the grade of lower division clerks will be upgraded to BS-9 from BS-7. Similarly, the grade of upper division clerks has been raised from BS-9 to BS-11. The post of assistants has been upgraded from BS-14 to BS-16 while the BS-15 assistant-in-charge will now enjoy the salary and perks of the BS-16 grade.
Khateebs working at government mosques in Islamabad will now enjoy the BS-15 grade up from the BS-12 in the outgoing year. Moazzins have been upgraded from the BS-5 to BS-7 pay scale. Rank of Khadims has been raised from BS-5 to BS-6.
The government has also decided to give compensatory allowance at a uniform rate of Rs300 per month to personnel of civil armed forces posted in border areas. They had been getting between Rs50 to Rs210 depending on their cadre.
For the federal government employees posted in “unattractive areas” like Chitral, Dir, Hazara division, Swat and Malakand, the compensatory allowance will be at par with what the Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa government pays to such employees.