Armed forces' suggestions sought on separate pay panel | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Armed forces' suggestions sought on separate pay panel

delhi Updated: Jan 07, 2009 19:36 IST

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The armed forces were on Wednesday asked for their suggestions on a separate pay panel that the Prime Minister's Office has cleared for them, an official said.

"The service headquarters have received a note from the defence ministry seeking suggestions on how to go about constituting a separate pay panel for the defence forces," the official added, requesting anonymity.

The note was sent along with a letter from the PMO on the decision on a separate pay commission for the armed forces to delink their salary revision from other government employees.

While agreeing to give more pay to lieutenant-colonels in the Indian Army and their equivalents in the Indian Navy and the Indian Air Force, the Prime Minister's Office December 31, 2008 sent a letter to the cabinet secretary informing him about the decision on a separate pay commission for the armed forces.

The government has also decided that lieutenant-colonels deployed on "combat or ready-to-combat" duties in their parent service may be placed in pay band four (Rs 37,400-67,000) - one step higher than the Sixth Pay Commission recommended in its report last year. Lieutenant-colonels on deputation will get the scale when they return to their parent service.

The government has also decided to set up a high-powered committee to resolve issues relating to command and control functions and the status of the armed forces vis-à-vis the paramilitary and civilian government employees.

However, the PMO letter is silent on one other issue: including officers of the rank of lieutenant-general and equivalent in the Higher Administrative Grade (HAG) Plus category that has been created in all government departments except the armed forces.

Directors-general of police, whose rank is equivalent to that of a lieutenant-general, have been placed in the HAG Plus category.

The report of the Sixth Pay Commission, headed by Justice (retd) BN Srikrishna, was submitted to then finance minister P Chidambaram March 24. Chidambaram is now the home minister, and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh holds the finance portfolio.