Pensioners Main demands for inclusion in Memorandum to 7th CPC
Bharat Pensioners Samaj
Few of the main demands of Central Government Pensioners’ identified by BPS for inclusion in the Memorandum to 7th CPC (Department wise issues will be attached as Annexure)
1.Bring down the Ratio between maximum & Minimum of Salay to 1: 9
Some 25 years back 4th CPC had determined the ratio between minimum & maximum of salary to be 10.7(Chapter 41 & 43) Vth cpc maintained it to be 10.97 (Appendix ‘I’ to VOl.III of 5th CPC report “ Summary of recommendations” para19) in their recommendations which while implementation was raised to 1:11.76
Shredding the basic fiber of the Constitution of Indian Socialistic State, after implementation of 6th CPC this ratio stand raised to 1: 12.85. Both for salaried employees & Pensioners. Which is much more, than even the capitalist countries like America & Britain.
This negative and socially regressive effects of the 6th Central Pay Commission has had the effect of worsening wealth and income inequality not only between pre-and post-2006 retirees, but even within pre-2006 retirees where in higher-ups from Scales S30.S31& above got full parity in Pension.
Raising, instead of reducing the ratio between minimum & maximum of salary is unconstitutional .
We demand: That Preamble to the Constitution, Articles 366(17),14 & 21read in the light of Honorable Supreme Court judgments, in the cases of D.S. NAKARA & OTHERS Vs UNION OF INDIA DATED 17/12/1982 1983 AIR 130,1983 SCR (2) 16, 1983 SCC (1) 305 1982 SCALE (2)1213, and, in the case of Consumer Education and Research Centre & Others Vs union of India(AIR 1995 supreme court 922) to be implemented in letter & spirit.
Accordingly the Ratio between minimum & maximum of Pay/Pension should progressively go on reducing ensuring complete equality.
We appeal to the 7th CPC: That the ratio between maximum & minimum Salary/Pension be brought down to 1: 9 accordingly, 7th pay commission should first workout the top most revised salary, divide it by 9 to arrive at the minimum revised salary & then on this basis derive a uniform multiplication factor to arrive at revised Pay & Pension with the condition that Pension shall not in any case be less than 65% & family Pension 45% of the last Pay in Pay in Pay Band/Pay scale or of average of last 10 months emoluments (Whichever is more beneficial)
2.Pension to be 65% of last drawn or 65% of Av. Of last 10 months emolument whichever beneficial & Family Pension to be 45% of last drawn or Av. Of 10month:
Honorable Supreme Court, in its landmark 5-Judge Constitutional Bench judgment dated 17.12.1982 in the case D.S.Nakara vs UOI, ruled that “A pension scheme consistent with available resources must provide that the Pensioner would be able to live Free from want, with decency, independence and self respect, and at a standard equivalent at pre- retirement level”. As laid down in Para 127.9 of 5th Central Pay Commission report Vol. III, the study done by the Consultants to 5th Central Pay Commission (TECS – Tata Economic Consultancy Services) recommended Pension to be 65% of the last emoluments drawn.
We demand 65% of the last drawn emoluments or 65% of the last 10 months’ average emoluments, whichever is more beneficial, as Pension and 45% as Family Pension subject to the condition that minimum pension shall not in any case will be less than 65 % of the 7th Central Pay Commission revised minimum Basic Pay of Central Govt. employees,
3. Grant 5% upward enhancement in pension be granted every five years’ after the age of 60 years & upto 80 years & thereafter as per existing dispensation.
In their Para 5.1.32, the 6th Central Pay Commission agreed that older pensioners require a better deal on account of their needs, especially those relating to health, increase with age. Accordingly, the Commission recommended that quantum of pension available to the old pensioners should be increased as follows:-
On attaining age of Additional quantum of pension
• 80 years – 20% of basic pension
• 85 years – 30% of basic pension
• 90 years – 40% of basic pension
• 95 years – 50% of basic pension
• 100 years – 100% of basic pension
In the present scenario of climatic changes, incidence of pesticides and rising pollution old age disabilities/diseases set in by the time an employee retires and go on manifesting very fast, needing additional finances to take care of these disabilities and diseases, especially as the cost of health care has gone very high compared to 01.01.2006.
We therefore, demand, that 5% upward enhancement in pension be granted every five years’ after the age of 60 years & upto 80 years & thereafter as per existing dispensation.
4.. Pension to be net of Income Tax :
The purchase value of pension gets reduced day by day due to continuously high inflation and steep rise in cost of food items and medical facilities. Retired persons/Senior citizens do not enjoy fully public goods and services provided by Government for citizens due to lack of mobility and many other factors. Their ability to pay tax gets reduced from year to year after retirement due to ever-increasing expenditure on food and medicines and other incidentals. Their net worth at year end gets reduced considerably as compared to the beginning of the year. Inflation, for a pensioner is much more than any tax. It erodes the major part of the already inadequate pension. To enable pensioners, at the far end of their lives, to live in minimum comfort and to cater for ever rising cost of living, they may be spared from paying Income Tax.
We demand that pension should be net of income tax as recommended by 5th Central Pay Commission, vide their Para 167.11(VTH CPC REPORT VOL. III)
5. Automatic Merger of Dearness relief with Pension :
The Pension of Central Government Pensioners undergo revision only once in 10 years during which period the pension structure gets seriously dis-aligned; 50% increase in price takes place even in less than 5 years. This results in considerable erosion of the financial position of the pensioner with otherwise inadequate Pension. As admitted by Shri Montek Singh Ahluwalia, Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission, in his statement to PTI on 27.2.2008, DA does not adequately take care of inflation. Working employees are getting automatic relief by way of 25% increase in their allowances with every 50% rise in Dearness Allowance. As pensioners do not get any allowances, they feel discriminated against. In order to strike a balance, DR may be merged with Pension whenever it goes beyond 50% as recommended by 5th Central Pay Commission.
We demand automatic merger of DR with pension, whenever it goes above 50%
6. Restoration of commuted vale of Pension in 12 years
Commutation value in respect of employee superannuating at the age of 60 years between 1.1.1996 and 31.12.2005 and commuting a portion of pension within a period of one year would be equal to 9.81 years Purchase. After adding thereto a further period of two years for recovery of interest, in terms of observation of Supreme Court in their judgment in writ petitions No 395-61 of 1983 decided in December 1986, it would be reasonable to restore commuted portion of pension in 12 years instead of present 15 years. In case of persons superannuating at the age of 60 years after 31.12.2005 and seeking commutation within a year, numbers of purchase years have been further reduced to 8.194. Also, the mortality rate of 60 plus Indians has considerably reduced ever since Supreme Court judgment in 1986; the life expectancy stands at 69 years now.
We demand restoration of commuted value of pension in a period of 12 years.
7. The 6th Central Pay Commission’s new benefits, e.g. full pension for 20 years of service/10 years in superannuation cases, last pay drawn or average of last 10 months’ pay whichever is beneficial to the retiring employee as emoluments for computation of pension etc., have been limited only to post-1.1.2006 retirees. This is in violation of the letter and spirit of Hon’ble Apex Court judgment in Nakara Case.
We appeal to the 7th CPC to extend the above benefits to all pre-1.1.2006 retirees with monetary benefit from 1.1.2006 to do them equal justice. And that new benefits as 7th CPC too be made equally applicable to present & past pensioners
To ensure hassle free health care facility to Pensioners/family pensioners, Smart Cards be issued irrespective of departments to all Pensioners and their Dependents for cashless medical facilities across the country. These smart cards should be valid in
• all Govt. hospitals
• all NABH accredited Multi Super Specialty hospitals across the country which have been allotted land at concessional rate or given any aid or concession by the Central or the State govt.
• all CGHS, RELHS & ECHS empanelled hospitals across the country.
· Medical attendants. Reimbursement bill for treatment both for hospitalization & No referral should be insisted in case of medical emergencies. For the purpose of reference for hospitalization & reimbursement of expenditure thereon in other than emergency cases Doctors/Medical officers working in different Central/State Govt. department dispensaries/health units should be recognized as Authorized OPD can be made by respective departments.
The enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health is recognized as a fundamental right of all workers in terms of Article 21 read with Article 39(c), 41, 43, 48A and all related Articles as pronounced by the Supreme Court in Consumer Education and Research Centre & Others vs Union of India (AIR 1995 Supreme Court 922) The Supreme court has held that the right to health to a worker is an integral facet of meaningful right to life to have not only a meaningful existence but also robust health and vigour. Therefore, the right to health, medical aid to protect the health and vigour of a worker while in service or post retirement is a fundamental right-to make life of a worker meaningful and purposeful with dignity of person. Thus health care is not only a welfare measure but is a Fundamental Right.
We demand that, all the pensioners, irrespective of pre-retiral class and status, be treated as same category of citizens and the same homogenous group. There should be no class or category based discrimination and must be provided Health care services at par with IAS and ex-Ministers.
9. Hospital Regulatory Authority:
To ensure that the hospitals do not avoid providing reasonable care to smart card holders and other poor citizens, a Hospital Regulatory Authority should be created to bring all NABH-accredited hospitals and NABL-accredited diagnostic Labs under its constant monitoring of quality, rates for different procedures & timely bill payments by Govt. agencies and Insurance companies. CGHS rates be revised keeping in mind the workability and market conditions.
We demand that a Hospital Regulatory Authority be constituted.
10.Fixed Medical allowance (FMA):
As is recorded in Para 5 of the minutes of Committee of Secretaries (COS) held on 15.04.2010 (Reference Cabinet Secretariat, Rashtrapati Bhavan No 502/2/3/2010-C.A.V Doc No. CD (C.A.V) 42/2010 Minutes of COS meeting dated 15.4.2010) which discussed enhancement of FMA: CGHS card estimates for serving Personnel since estimates are not available separately for pensioners M/O Health & Family Welfare had assessed the total cost per card p.a. in 2007-2008 = Rs 16435 i.e. Rs.1369 per month for OPD. Adding to its inflation the figure today is well over Rs 2000/- PM. Ministry of Labour & Employment, Govt. of India vide its letter no. G-25012/2/2011-SSI dated 07.06.2013 has already enhanced FMA to Rs 2000/- PM for EPFO beneficiaries. Thus, to help elderly pensioners to look after their health, Adequate raise in FMA will encourage a good number of pensioners to opt out of OPD facility which will reduce overcrowding in hospitals. OPD through Insurance will cost much more to the Govt. As such the proposal for raising Fixed Medical allowance to Pensioners is fully justified and is financially viable.
We demand that FMA for all C.G. Pensioners be raised to at least Rs 2000/- PM without any distance restriction linking it to Dearness Relief for automatic further increase. We further demand that FMA be exempted from INCOME TAX: Fixed Medical Allowance (FMA) is a compensatory allowance to reimburse the medical expenses. As Medical Reimbursement is not taxable, FMA should also be exempted from Income Tax.
11.Grievance redressal Mechanism:
Pensioners/Family Pensioners are exploited, harassed and humiliated by their own counterparts in chair, who at the sight of an old person adopt a wooden face and indifferent attitude. Pensioners do not have representation even in Forums & Committees wherein pension policies and connected matters are discussed. The forum of Pension Adalat too is not of much avail as it meets only once a year which is too long a period for an elderly nearer to his end. Moreover, these Adalats deal with settlement claims only. SCOVA too meets only twice a year for about 3 hours at occasion. Moreover, the scope of SCOVA is limited to feedback on Government policies. DOP (P&PW) is perceived as a toothless authority which lacks direct Service Delivery Capability. It has been striving over the years to redress the Pensioners’ grievances through the ‘Sevottam’ model of the Department of Administrative Reforms & Public grievances; in the absence of strict timeline with punitive clause it is, however, proving to be a failure. Grievances are either not resolved for years or closed arbitrarily without resolving.
We therefore, appeal that for resolving Pensioners complaints of all pensioners,
(i) A strict time line with punitive clause be introduced in “Sevottam model”
(ii) Grievances are not allowed to be closed without resolving.
(iii) SCOVA be upgraded to JCM level covering all Pensioners by introducing suitable legislative amendment if required.
(iv) As recommended vide Vth CPC report Vol III para 141.30 Pensioners’ representatives should be included in various committees & other For a of Govt where issues relating to the welfare of pensioners are likely to be discussed &debated
Source : Bharat Pensioners Samaj