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Panel on pay in forces, arrears to be paid soon
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, September 27
In an attempt to address the resentment of the armed forces over lowering of their status vis--vis their civilian counterparts by the Sixth Pay Commission, the Government today formed a committee of three ministers headed by Union external affairs minister Pranab Mukherjee to look into the matter.

Soon after the government announced the formation of the panel, it said ad hoc payment of arrears would be made at the earliest.

The government has found merit in the demands of the forces, said a top-ranking official. The financial burden of meeting these demands was being worked out. To restore parity will cost about Rs 400 crore said sources.

It was expected that the ministerial committee, with Union finance minister P Chidambaram and defence minister AK. Antony as its members, will work to remove the anomalies before the end of next month. The matter will then be referred to the Prime Minister, who despite being abroad gave instructions to form a committee. The armed forces had petitioned the PM saying that the issue should not be handed over to the anomalies committee but be dealt at the political level.

The government has asked the three service chiefs to notify the pay panel within their respective forces by Monday.

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