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Tribune Special
Army dissatisfied over pay panel report
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, May 1
Army commanders have conveyed to defence minister A. K Antony that the Army is expecting better wages and status or it could have serious repercussions on the morale of the officers and the jawans, who are “dis-satisfied” with what has been suggested by the 6th pay panel.

The commanders are here to attend an ongoing half-yearly conference and have conveyed to the minister that the status of the Army officers’ vis-à-vis civil officers has been lowered and correction was required. The financial condition of the persons below officer rank (PBOR’s) and officers needs to be improved.

The Commanders are of the view that there should be “no dilution” in the demands made by the top brass of the defence ministry to the anomalies committee of the government secretaries. The committee is scheduled to meet on May 5. The commanders have conveyed the prevailing sentiment of “being left out” among the rank and file of the Army, sources confirmed.

The demands that have been elaborated are PBOR (that is jawans and others) should get a military service pay of Rs 3,000 and not Rs 1,000 as suggested by the pay commission. Since the pay scales are to be applicable from January 1, 2006, it has been pointed out that 90 per cent of 11 lakh PBOR’s will not be benefited. It is pay commission for future appointees and does not take care of the existing persons, the officials said.

It has been pointed out that 94 per cent of the officers from Lieutenant to Brigadier will retire in one pay band only. The principal demand is restoration of status and introduction of two more pay bands. One between Lieutenant to Lieutenant Colonels and the other between Colonels to Brigadiers with suitable raise linked to the length of service.

It may be mentioned that a body of ex-servicemen has shot-off a letter to the Prime Minister saying the anomalies in the recommendations of the 6th Pay Commission should be dealt by a group of ministers (GoM) and not the three secretaries. The IPS central association that is also aggrieved with certain aspects of the pay commission has also made a similar demand. Former Army Chief N.C Vig has also joined in the chorus of demanding a GoM to look into it.



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