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Will 8th Pay Commission be Set Up Ahead of Lok Sabha Elections? Center Gives Big Update For Govt Employees.

8th Pay Commission Latest Update: As lakhs of employees are waiting for updates on implementation of a new pay commission, the Centre on Friday made a big announcement saying it doesn’t have any plan to set up 8th Pay Commission for government employees.

Speaking to NDTV, Finance Ministry Secretary TV Somanathan said the Centre has no plans to set up the eighth Pay Commission for 5.4 million central government employees and pensioners ahead of the national election next year.

“There is nothing in the offing regarding setting up the 8th Pay Commission. It’s not due at present,” Somanathan was quoted as saying by the news channel.

According to the past trends in the run-up to elections, the Centre has used the establishing or implementation of the Pay Commission as an effective tool to win over government employees, armed forces personnel and family pensioners. It should be noted that the 7th Pay Commission was set up by the Congress-led UPA government in September 2013, just some months before state and general elections.

However, the Central government at present steered clear of such a move, instead focusing on a review of a new pension scheme that has become a point of contention for new state and central government employees.

As per the current scheme of 7th Pay Commission, employees contribute 10 per cent of their basic salary, while the government pays 14%. In the recent past, it has become politically contentious, with several opposition-ruled states switching to the old pension scheme that guarantees pensioners 50 per cent of their last drawn salary monthly, without any employee contribution.

The Centre had set up a committee led by the Finance Secretary to review the system. “We have completed consultations with all concerned and our report should be submitted soon,” Somanathan added.

However, the Centre is likely to bring about changes to ensure employees get at least 40 to 45 per cent of their last salary.

As the Lok Sabha election is coming, there is increasing political pressure on the Finance Ministry to announce and notify the 8th pay commission, irrespective of the outcome of the results of elections in five states.

India.com Business Desk