**Bhubaneswar:** Odisha Government’s 7th Pay Commission Fitment Committee held its first meeting on Friday to finalise the modalities prior to the recommendations for the State Government employees and pensioners.
Briefing media R. Balakrishnan, Development Commissioner, said, “The first meeting of our Fitment Committee was held today in presence of all the members of the committee. The representatives of 20 associations met us and submitted their demands in writing. The committee has received their applications where they have highlighted their major demands. We’ll look into that. The committee will like this meet the groups separately. Then we’ll do a detail analysis.”
Prasanna Kumar Tripathy, Secretary, Odisha Amala Sangha said, “We’ve several times given these demands to the State Government. Many a time meeting on it has been held headed by the Chief Secretary. The present chairman of the Fitment Committee, R. Balakrishnan Sir, had also headed a meeting in this regard on 21.9.2015. However, no notification on the fulfilment of our demands has been yet. Hence, our Odisha Amala Sangha has decided to resort to pen down strike from 28.11.2016. This we have apprised the Fitment Committee.”
Braja Nanda, President, Odisha State Non Gazetted Officers’ Association said, “We’ve spelt out before the Fitment Committee what should be the salary slabs starting from Class IV to the highest level of IAS officers in the State here. The main thing we’ve pointed out is that Mahatma Gandhi had given a formula of 1:6 ratio to maintain an economic balance between the rich and the poor in India. We’ve put forth the statistics since 1974 Pay Committee. The ratios of the respective Pay Committees thenceforth have been cited by us. Now in 2016, the ratio in the Pay Committee of Government of India has soared up to 1:14. Following which, the lowest category employee is entitled to get Rs 18,000 while the official at the highest strata is reaping Rs 2.5 lakh. As the ratio had a yawning gap, the rich employees became richer and the poor employees became poorer. Hence, we’ve stressed on the 1:6 ratio.”
Rajendra Acharya, Secretary, Odisha Revenue Service Association said, “In our association there are assistant collectors, additional tehsildars, etc. We put forth our demand before the Fitment Committee to enhance our grade pay to Rs 5,400 and higher pay scale to our new recruits. There was hearing and we’re satisfied. The difference was understood and we were said that the committee would try to resolve it. We’re certain that it would be implemented.”
According to sources, the Fitment Committee will hold discussions with 117 employee associations.
Notably, the State Government on October 31 constituted a 6-member Fitment Committee. It will submit its review report within 4 months.