Wednesday, 5 July 2017
MASS PROTEST DEMONSTRATIONS AND BURNING OF HRA ORDERS ON 25TH JULY 2017
PROTEST AGAINST BETRAYAL OF NDA GOVERNMENT
CONFEDERATION OF CENTRAL GOVERNMENT EMPLOYEES AND WORKERS DECIDED TO ORGANISE
MASS PROTEST DEMONSTRATIONS AND BURNING OF HRA ORDERS ON 25TH JULY 2017 AT MAXIMUM CENTRES THROUGH OUT THE COUNTRY
THOSE HANDS WHICH ARE AFRAID OF RAISING AGAINST INJUSTICES
THOSE TONGUES WHICH ARE AFRAID OF VOICING AGAINST INJUSTICES
ARE SYMBOLS OF SLAVERY AND SURRENDER.
Seventh Central pay Commission Report was submitted to Government on 19.11.2015. Most of the recommendations, especially in the case of Minimum wage, fitment formula, Pay scales of most of the cadres, Allowances, Advances, MACP, CCL, etc. are most retrograde. 7th CPC recommendations are the worst recommendations after the 2nd Pay Commission recommendations (1960). The National Joint Council of Action (NJCA) comprising the National Council JCM Staff Side (mainly Railways, Defence and Confederation) gave notice for indefinite strike to Government on 09.06.2016, seeking modifications in the recommendations. Government refused to call the NJCA leaders for a negotiated settlement and unilaterally declared the decisions of the Cabinet on 29.06.2016. NJCA decided to go ahead with the indefinite strike. On 30.06.2016, Group of Cabinet Ministers including Shri Rajnath Singh, Home Minister, Shri Arun Jaitley, Finance Minister and Shri Suresh Prabhu, Railway Minister held discussion with the NJCA leaders. It was assured that Minimum Pay and Fitment formula will be increased and a High Level Committee will be constituted to submit recommendations in this regard to the Government. It was also assured that all other issues arising out of implementation of 7th CPC will be considered favourably. Four months time limit was also fixed for implementation of the assurances. Based on the above assurances the indefinite strike was deferred for four months.
Evenafter four months time limit fixed, no high level committee was constituted and all other issues remained unsettled. Government constituted committees after committee – Implementation Committee, Empowered Committee, Allowance Committee, Pension Option-I Committee, NPS Committee, Anomaly Committee etc. – but till this day no High Level Committee for increasing Minimum Pay and Fitment formula is constituted eventhough a Group of officers headed by Additional Secretary (Expenditure) held two meetings with the staff side without any discussion on Minimum Pay and fitment formula.
Committees were constituted to delay or deny the demands placed by staff side.
1. Allowances Committee delayed its report for about ten months to deny increase in HRA rates and arrears from 01.01.2016.
2. Pension Option-I Committee rejected the one and the only favourable recommendations of the 7th CPC i.e; Option-I parity for pre-2016 pensioners.
3. NPS Committee categorically stated that withdrawal of NPS is not under the purview of the committee.
As the Government was not ready to honour its assurances given to the NJCA leaders, evenafter a lapse of four months, Confederation has requested the dominant organisations in the NJCA to revive the deferred indefinite strike. As there was no concensus in the NJCA regarding revival of indefinite strike or organizing any serious trade union action (for reason best known to all) against the betrayal of the Government, Confederation National Conference decided to organize independent agitation programmes. Accordingly Massive Parliament March with participation of about 15000 employees and pensioners on 15.12.2016, one day nationwide strike of about thirteen (13) lakhs Central Government employees on 16.03.2017, Mass dharna of about 3000 employees and pensioners in front of Finance Ministers office on 23.05.2017, Human Chain of Central Government employees and Pensioners at all major centres on 22.06.2017 were organized by Confederation for settlement of 21 points charter of demands which included the demands of all sections of employees and pensioners including Gramin Dak Sevaks, Casual Contract workers and Autonomous body employees and pensioners.
After more than eleven months from the date notification of Revised (Pay) Rules 2016 (25.07.2016), Union Cabinet approved the revised allowances on 28.06.2017 without any major modifications, including HRA and Transport Allowances applicable to all section of employees. HRA rate was not increased from 24, 16, and 8%. The date of effect was fixed as 01.07.2017 instead of 01.01.2016.
Some of our friends, who are welcoming and supporting the Government’s decision on allowances are arguing that never in the past Revived Pay and Revised Allowances were given from the same date and for HRA etc. retrospective effect was not given. They consciously want to hide the fact that in the past revised allowances including HRA were granted from the month/next month of notification of Revised Pay Rules. Even if that practice is taken as a precedence, this time employees have every right to get Revised Allowance including HRA from 01.07.2016, as Revised (Pay) Rules 2016 was notified on 25.07.2016. Similarly, never in the past HRA rates were reduced by Pay Commissions. Those who support the Government’s decision are deliberately hiding this fact to somehow justify their stand and misguide the employees, because of their guilty conscience.
As the dominant organisations of the NJCA have left from the path of struggle for realization of the 7th CPC related justified demands raised in the July 11th indefinite strike charter, Confederation has decided to carry forward the struggle against the betrayal of the Government and non-implementation of assurances given by the Hon’ble Ministers. We have made it open that we strongly disagree and disown the stand taken by the Secretary, National Council JCM staff side, (Who is also the convenor of NJCA) by welcoming and thanking the Government for the decisions on Allowances including HRA. Confederation represents the sentiments of entire Central Government employees pensioners especially grass root level workers. It cannot be a party to any statement or action which the ordinary workers feel as betrayal of their cause. Confederation shall continue its struggle against the injustices meted out to the Central Government employees and Pensioners (including Autonomous body employees and pensioners, Gramin Dak Sevaks and casual, Contract workers) by the NDA Government.
Descending to the level of submitting to the dictates of the Government, compromising on the basic principles of trade Union, leaving away the path of struggle ignoring the of principles of collective bargaining, getting addicted to the JCM machinery of never ending, no-result-oriented discussions and consultations --- is not the tradition of Confederation. Confederation is a different organisation which our critics and enemies cannot understand.
We are fighting against a Government which is aggressively implementing neo-liberal reforms and we know that struggle path is tough and difficult and require sacrifices. Eventhen, we prefer, that path than the path of opportunism, surrender and compromises. Eventhough we have not won our battle in full, we firmly believe that whatever achievements and benefits the NDA Government was compelled to grant (Example – enhancement of Bonus ceiling to 7000, eligibility for gratuity to NPS employees. 5th Pay Commission recommended parity to pre-2016 pensioners (option-3), microscopic modifications in HRA at minimum level and some other allowances including enhancement of Fixed Medical Allowance to Pensioners and retention of some of the allowances recommended for abolition etc.) is only because of the continuous nationwide campaign and struggle conducted by the Confederation and Confederation alone. Those who never participated in any strike or struggle and only enjoyed the fruits of the struggle and sacrifice of others can never understand the importance of struggle or strike. Empty vessels always go on making much noise, but we believe in action.
It is in this background, the National Secretariat of Confederation of Central Government Employees & Workers has decided to intensify our struggle. To express the strong protest, anger and resentment of the employees, against the totally negative and indifferent attitude of NDA Government and also against the betrayal of the Group of Cabinet Ministers of NDA Government, Confederation calls upon the entire employees to organize mass protest demonstration on 25th July 2017 (25.07.2017 Tuesday) at all centres at centralized places and burn the orders on HRA issued by the Government. Wide publicity may be given to the programme through local print and electronic media and also social media.
The next phase of agitational programmes will be decided by the National Secretariat meetings of Confederation scheduled to be held at Bengaluru on 9th August 2017.
All affiliated organisations and C-O-Cs are requested to make the above programme a grant success.
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