Wednesday, September 21, 2016


                                                     T.NARASIMHAN, National Vice -President, CCGEW.
            The working class of the country expressed its strong protest against the pro-corporate, anti-Labour and anti-people policies of Sri Narendra Mode Government at the center through its nationwide strike conducted on 2nd September. Whereas  about 15 crore workers and employees participated in the strike of 2nd September last year the number of participants went up to about 18 crores this year. The present strike is being considered to be the biggest among all those so far conducted in independent India.  

            In spite of several attempts by the ruling B.J.P. Government at the center and its trade union B.M.S. to prevent the strike through false propaganda and deception the working class did not yield and registered its strong resentment against the retrograde measures of the Modi Government. Though the Union Labour Minister, Sri Bandaru Dattatreya endeavoured to attain self-satisfaction by stating that the strike was not much effective, the statements of many a federation of trading community which made it clear that the strike resulted in a loss of about 18,000 crore  rupees to the nation belied his statement. The minister's home state, Telangana, itself was severely affected. All transport organizations, both public and private, including state run R.T.C. and autos stayed off the roads and an atmosphere of bundh was witnessed. The coal manning in Singareni Collieries which spreads over four districts of the state came to a grinding halt. Many industries in and around Hyderabad downed their shutters because their work force joined the strike.

            The public life in many states came to a standstill due to  total strike in their transport systems. Kerala and Tripura experienced a state of complete bundh. Many workers who are not affiliated to any organisation in several industrial areas of the country also took part in the struggle. The workers and employees of many key sectors in the country like Banking, Coal, Oil, Insurance etc., and many public sector undertakings including B.H.E.L.  completely struck work.            
            The Modi Government is often asserting that the working class has lost its primacy in the country and the stage is ready for the corporate sector to take over. It is earnestly wishing that the fruits of new economic policy which is being pursued for the last 25 years should entirely go only to the corporates. All the moves of the present government are only in that direction. The Modi Government is emphasizing that the working class does'nt require any protection and its duty is only to  produce wealth through its hard labour without aspiring to any profits, as was preached by Lord Sri Krishna in "Bhagavatgita". Government providing 'Z' Class security to Sri Mukhesh Ambani, the country's foremost billionaire and 'Y'Class security to his spouse are to be viewed in that light.

            On the occasion of celebrating the 70th Independence Day all the customers of B.S.N.L. in the country received a message from non-other than the Prime Minister Sri Modi on 15th August with his  greetings and an appeal to listen to his Independence Day  speech that was going to be delivered from the ramparts of Red Fort on that day. The people who listened to it attentively were surprised. Even the Chief Justice of the Apex Court of the country publicly expressed his dissatisfaction over the speech. The judiciary, which has been hitherto turning a deaf ear to the loud cries of the country's intelligentsia, working class and the unemployed that the reforms which are being implemented for the last quarter century are drastically reducing the employment opportunities in the country, is itself feeling the heat of the reforms now. The Chief Justice was critical about the Prime Minister's silence in his speech on the large scale vacancies in the judiciary which are affecting quick dispensation of justice to the needy.
            Recently a survey conducted on the economies of various countries in the world declared that India occupies 7th place in the list of wealthy nations. The N.D.A. Government patted its back on this report. The rulers declared that their policies alone elevated the country to that position and the propaganda of the working class that the country is falling back is not at all true. A country, 50% of whose population falls below poverty line or just above it occupying 7th place among wealthy nations! How ridiculous!!

            The Prime Minister while addressing a seminar in New Delhi recently remarked that some people are still hanging to the out dated theory of 'Capital and Labour' of the 19th century and are trying to infuse it even today. He further commented that in the background of changing economic environment of the world Labour is losing its predominance and technology is to step into its place. However, the Honorable Prime Minister should clearly understand that no country can progress economically in absence of 'Capital and Labour'. He should recognize that without Labour capital alone cannot create wealth and so he should respect the value of Labour power. But unfortunately the central government is found lacking in this respect. The 2nd September strike is a result of such an attitude.

            Similarly, the Prime Minister's Red Fort address was remarkably mum on price rise which is a serious problem that is being encountered by the people every day. There was also no mention of this strike of the working class and its demands. But it was unfortunate that his speech referred to the working women of the country in a belittling tone. He declared that the existing laws would be amended to enable all the malls, huge shops, bars, clubs and pubs remain open 24 hours a day and allow women to work during nights. In this context one should not lose sight of the fact that our country is one among those where security to women is at its least. There is strict condition in U.S.A. which insists that if a woman works in a club during nights somebody who is close to her should also be on duty in the same club during that period. The Prime Minister should have consulted Mr. Obama, the President of U.S.A. who recently turned out to be his close friend, on this matter. The P.M's. foregoing remarks about working women exhibit how scant his respect to them is. 
            The Modi Government came to power in 2014 on the strength of 'Swadeshi' and 'Bharat Matha ki Jai' slogans. But it is not lagging behind its forerunners in pursuing  the policy of 'Videshi' from day one. The only difference is that the previous governments put the country on sale in retail market whereas the present government put it to sale in wholesale market. It is selling away the public properties at very low prices to the corporates and multinationals by inviting F.D.Is. into Defence, Railway, Banking, Insurance, Telecom, and Retail sectors as well as public sector undertakings. The patriotic working class of the country went into the 2nd September strike with an aim of protecting the public properties.

            It is unethical to divert the pension funds which provide social security to the employees and workers, to private investments. Same is taking place in National Pension System. The N.P.S. enables the pension funds to be diverted to speculation business comprising of mutual funds, equities and other share market transactions and makes the employees to face its consequences. The longevity of life of employees and workers is being considered a burden by the government. The Ex-M.Ps. and Ex-M.L.As. who were in saddle for just 5 years are being paid lifelong pension. After they cease to exist their wives are paid a monthly pension of about Rs.25,000/- . But an employee or worker who serves for 35 to 40 years and plays his role properly in developing national wealth is denied pension by the government.     
            The government is gloating over the development rate and claiming credit for it exclusively. It is arguing that the growth rate of the country is the highest when compared with other nations and that fact underlines the necessity of implementing their present policies at a faster pace. However, it is completely depending on the Rain God for the development rate to increase from the present level of 7.6% to 8%. Whatever may be the growth rate of national economy, the statics of the government itself show that the growth rate of employment generation is a meager 1.7%. Even during the period from 2004-05 to 2009-10 when the growth rate was between 8% and 9% the increase in rate of employment was only 0.8%. Every year about one crore students who are anxious of getting an employment are passing out from colleges and universities. But according to Central Labour Board statistics only 1.5 lakh jobs were created last year. The people and the working class are questioning the usefulness of economic development that does not lead to proportionate increase in employment potential. The corporate sector is asserting that the employment opportunities diminish to the extent of induction of technology and automation into different sectors of economy. The working class is demanding a human resource oriented progress in a country of about 125 crore population.

            A report of the National Sample Survey Organization of the Union Government revealed, on the other hand, that the economic reforms have brought down the purchasing power of the people and so the nutrition values of their food are also on the decrease. Dr. Akroyd formula stipulates that an adult should consume a diet of 2,700 calories value per day. But the percentage of population that is consuming less than 2,700 calories has gone up from 58.52% in 1993-94 to 68% in 2011-12. This precisely is the development that was brought about by the reforms.   
            Over and above all the foregoing, the Modi Government is showing a scant respect to the laws of the nation. When 10 central trade unions and more than 40 independent federations served a statutory notice for strike, the government, instead of holding discussions with them, held talks with B.M.S., an R.S.S. affiliate and a pro-B.J.P. organization which was against the strike, with the sole intention of thwarting the struggle. 

            This N.D.A. Government came to power by promising the people a rule quite different from that of its predecessors and unearthing black money which amounts to about Rs.10 lakhs per head. But after coming to power it began to hoodwink them and stand in support of corporates and exploiters. The 2nd September strike took place to remind the government that it is on a contract only for a period of five years and to warn that it would be shown the door in 2019 if it goes ahead with its anti-people, anti-working class and pro-capitalist policies.   

            The heat generated by this strike compelled the sub-committee of ministers to hastily announce some sops. Important among them is an improvement in the minimum wage. The daily wage of a 'C' category labourer was enhanced from the present Rs.246/- to Rs.350/-. That amounts to about Rs.9,100/- per month. But some of the state governments are already giving a minimum wage of more than Rs.10,000/- per month. The minimum wage announced by the central government is miles away from Rs.18,000/- which are being demanded by the working class. The statement of the government that 7 out of 12 demands were settled is nothing other than a falsehood. What, the demands of the workers of Anganwadi, mid-day meal and unorganized sector could elicit from the government are mere assurances and not concrete proposals. The statement of the Finance Minister that the bank employees have nothing to do with bank merger proposals is highly objectionable. In the background of international economy still being haunted by the 2008 debacle of the biggest bank in U.S.A. the pronouncements of our Finance Minister, a Corporate Lawyer, that bigger banks will give a boost to the economy are unwise and bereft of reason.

            Whereas the B.J.P. Government at the center enhanced the ceiling limit on bonus the state governments belonging to the same party approached respective High Courts and obtained stay orders on center’s decision. If the center goes on an appeal to the Supreme Court the B.J.P. state governments will argue against it. The working class of the country should understand this pseudo fight between the center and some states. However, that class is not ready to accept the devious methods that are being adopted by the central government in making amendments to laws through executive orders instead of a parliamentary process.

            In this background the strike of 2nd September, 2016 should be considered as a warning to Modi Government to desist from its anti-people and anti-labour policies. Otherwise the working class of the country will be compelled to wage more bigger and unified struggles in the direction of changing the government.


Monday, September 19, 2016

The Historic One Day Strike of 19th September 1968 – Red Salute to Martyrs!

The Historic One Day Strike of 19th September 1968 – Red Salute to Martyrs!
48 years are over after the great historical one day token strike of the Central Government employees which took place on 19th September 1968.
It was nothing less than history created by the more than 40 lakhs of Central government employees. The One Day Token Strike of 19th September 1968 will ever remain as a Red Star in the minds of all those who participated and those who heard about it. The martyrs who sacrificed their lives before the gun shots of the cruel government or the Railwaymen who were crushed under the Railway engines will ever be remembered by the Central Government employees. It was only a One Day Token Strike, but it was dealt with like a rebellion or mutiny by the despotic government.
The demands were fully justified. Grant of Minimum Wage recommended by the 15th Labour Conference of 1957, Full Neutralisation of cost of living, Merger of DA with Pay, No casual-Contract-Contingency system, Settle issues of the ED and Casual labour – these are nothing but the ground level demands. But the Central Govt. was not prepared to concede them. It wanted to crush the workers movement, never to come back again. Essential Service Maintenance Ordinance(ESMO) was issued making the strike participants liable to be arrested and sent to jail. Even those outsiders who support the strike also will be arrested.
Thousands and thousands of workers were arrested. All India leaders in Delhi were arrested and sent to jail. Thousands were suspended, terminated and heavy punishments imposed. It was state terror on the poor CG employees who were only asking for a minimum wage to maintain their families. Rarely can be seen such cruelty in the annals of history.
The workers understood that the Indira Gandhi government wanted to crush the CGE movement and especially the Posts and Telegraph movement. But workers never surrendered or moved an inch back.
The strike was utilised by the government to float a new union, FNPTO, to support its policy. But it did not make any dent in the TU movement.
The strike was historic in more than one sense. The same government which refused to accept the demands were compelled to implement some of them afterwards. Each and every struggle is not vain. The result may come immediately or later. Secondly, the government understood that the P and T movement can not be crushed.
On this 48th Anniversary of the One Day Token Strike of 19th September 1968, our Red Salutes to those Comrades who held the Red Flag of the Union till their last moment and sacrificed their valuable lives for the cause of the working class.

Friday, September 16, 2016




PF-No.PF-PJCA/2016                                                               Dated:16th September, 2016

          The Secretary,
          Department of Post,
          Sansad Marg,
          Dak Bhawan,
          New Delhi-110 001


1.   The recommendation of the 7th CPC that Tough Location Allowance will not be admissible alongiwth Special Duty Allowance (SDA) should not be accepted by Government.

In para 8.10.62 of the 7th CPC the following recommendation is made –

Para 8.10.62 -  There are some “Special Compensatory” Allowances that are based on geographical location and are meant to compensate for hardship faced by employees posted in such places. It is proposed to subsume these allowances under the umbrella of “Tough Location Allowance”.

In Para 8.10.63 the Commission made the following recommendations –
“The Tough Location Allowance will, however, not be admissible along with Special Duty Allowance”.

At present, special allowances are paid in the following places along with Special Duty Allowance.

(a)  Assam and North Easter Region – Special Compensatory allowance paid alongwith Special Duty Allowance.
(b) Andaman & Nicobar Islands – Special Compensatory Allowance paid alongwith Island Special Duty Allowance.
(c)  Tripura Special Compensatory Remote Locality Allowance paid along with Special Duty Allowance.

Demand of the staff side:       In all the above cases “Tough Location Allowance” may be paid alongwith Special Duty Allowance. Withdrawal of any of the above allowances, will result in substantial financial loss to the employees. An existing benefit should not be withdrawn, under the pretext of 7th CPC’s unjustified recommendation.

2.   Special Duty Allowance in N. E. Region should be uniform for all at 30%.

In Para 8.17.115 the 7th CPC made the following observation –
“Special Duty Allowance (SDA) is granted to attract civilian employees to seek posting in North Eastern and Ladhak Regions, in view of the risk and hardship prevailing in these areas. Currently the rate of SDA is 37.5% of Basic Pay for AIS officers and 12.5% of Basic Pay for other employees.

In para 8.17.118 the Commission made the following recommendation –
“Accordingly in line with our general approach of rationalizing the percentage based allowance by a factor of 0.8, SDA for AIS officers should be paid at the rate of 30% of Basic Pay and for other civilian employees at the rate of 10% of their basic pay.

Demand of the staff side:  The discrimination between AIS officers and other civilian employees in payment of SDA should not be there and all may be paid at the same rate i.e. at the rate of 30% recommended by the pay commission for AIS officers.

3.   Allowances which are not reported to 7th CPC by the concerned departments.

In para 8.2.5 of the report, the 7th CPC made the following recommendation.
“We have considered all allowances reported to us, in this chapter. Any allowances, not mentioned here (And hence not reported to the commission) shall cease to exist immediately. In case there is any demand or requirement for continuation of an existing allowance which has not been deliberated upon or covered in this report, it should be re-notified by the ministry concerned after obtaining due approval of Ministry of Finance and should be put in the public domain”.

Demand of the Staff Side: The above recommendation should not be accepted, as it amounts to penalizing employees for the fault of the departmental heads. The following allowance which are not reported to the commission should be retained and enhanced.

(a)  PO & RMS Accountants’ Special allowance
Postal Assistants and Sorting Assistants of Postal department are posted as PO & RMS Accountant after passing a qualifying examination. Taking into consideration their work which require much skill, application of mind, and knowledge of all rulings, Special allowance is granted to them. This allowance may beretained and enhanced.

4.   Savings Bank Allowance in Post offices:

In Department of Posts, Savings Bank Allowance is granted to Postal Assistant working in Post Office Savings Bank (POSB) for shouldering strenuous and complicated nature of Savings Bank work. Postal Assistants need to qualify an aptitude test to get this allowance. The current rates are Rs.300/- per month for fully engaged staff and Rs.150/- per month for partially engaged staff.

In para 8.10.80 of the report, the Commission recommended as follows:
“Savings Bank Allowance be abolished as the justification provided by the concerned ministry for the grant of this allowance is not sufficient for their continuance”.

Demand of staff side:        Savings Bank Allowance should be retained and enhanced in view of the justification given above.

5.   Special Compensatory (Hill area) Allowance

In para 8.10.50 of the report, the 7th CPC made the following recommendation – “There is hardly any hardship involved at altitude of 1000 meters (more than 3000 feets) above sea level. Hence, it is recommended that the allowance should be abolished.
Demand of the staff side:            The above observation of the commission is not based on ground realities but based on presumption. Hence the above allowance should be retained and enhanced.

6.   Family Planning Allowance

In para 8.17.50 of the report, the 7th CPC made the following recommendations – “The commission recognizes the fact that most of the benefit related to children viz. children Education Allowance, maternity Leave, LTC etc. are available for two children only. Moreover, the level of awareness regarding appropriate family size has also gone up among Government servants. Hence, a separate allowance aimed towards population control is not required. Accordingly, it is recommended that family planning allowance should be abolished.

Demand of the staff side:  The above allowance may be retained. In any case, the Family Planning Allowance already granted should not be withdrawn.

7.   Fixed Medical Allowance

In Para 8.17.51 of the report the 7th CPC observed as follows –

It is granted to pensioners for meeting expenditure on day to day medical expenses that do not require hospitalization, presently payable at the rate of Rs.500/- p.m. Demands have been received to increase the rate of this allowance to Rs.2000/-.

In para 8.17.52 the Commission made the following recommendation-
The Commission notes that the allowance was enhanced from Rs.300/- to Rs.500/- p.m from 19.11.2014. As such, further enhancement of this allowance is not recommended.

Demand of the staff side:   in the memorandum submitted to 7th CPC, the staff side had elaborately explained the justification for enhancing the FMA to Rs.2000/-. As everybody knows, old age persons are suffering from many deceases and as the cost of medicines has increased manifold the expenditure on outdoor medical treatment has also gone up like anything. With Rs.500/- p.m no pensioner can meet the medical expenses. The commission has not conducted any scientific and realistic study, but simply rejected the demand stating that it is enhanced recently. It is once again requested that the FMA for pensioners may be enhanced to Rs.2000/- p.m as in the case of EPF pensioners.

8.   Cash handling Allowance

In para 8.10.9 of the report, the 7th CPC observed as follows: -

It is paid to cashiers working in Central Government departments, for handling of cash. The current rates are –

Average amount of monthly cash disbursed
Rate per month
Below Rs. 50000
Over Rs. 50000 upto 200000
Over 200000 upto 500000
Over 500000 upto 1000000
Above 1000000

Again in Para 8.10.57 the commission observed as follows: -

Treasury Allowance – This allowance is granted in Department of Posts to Treasurers and Assistant Treasurers working in Head Post offices and large Sub Post offices for handling cash. The present rate is Rs.360/- p.m for handling cash upto Rs.2 lakhs and Rs.480/- p.m. for handling cash more than Rs.2 lakhs.

In para 8.10.80 the commission made the following recommendation
Assistant cashier Allowance, Cash handling allowance and Treasury Allowance –
With technological advances and growing emphasis on banking, these allowances have lost their relevance. Hence it is recommended that not only all salary be paid through banks, but Ministries/departments should work out plans to first minimize and then eliminate all sorts of cash transactions.

Demand of the staff Side:  The recommendation of the Commission is not realistic. Till that time the cash transactions are eliminated the Cash handling allowance and Treasury allowance should be retained and enhanced.

9.   Cycle Allowance

In para 8.15.10 of the report the 7th CPC made the following observation.
“It is paid where the duties attached to the post require extensive use of bicycle and the official concerned has to use and maintain his own cycle for official journeys. The existing rate is Rs.90 p.m.

In para 15.11 the commission made the following recommendation –
“The Commission is of the view that amount of this allowance is megre and the allowance itself is outdated. Hence it should be abolished.

Demand of the staff side:            This allowance is at present given to more than 40000 Postmen staff and about 50000 GraminDakSevaks of the Postal Department. When the commission itself observed that an official using his own bicycle for official duties has to incur expenditure for maintenance of the cycle. When the maintenance work is done for performing official duties, the amount should be reimbursed to the official, whether the amount is megre or not – Hence this allowance should be retained and enhanced.

10.  Overtime Allowance

In para 8.17.97 of the report the 7th CPC made the following recommendations -

Hence while this commission shares the sentiments of the predecessors that Government offices need to increase productivity and efficiency and recommended that OTA should be abolished (except for operational staff and industrial employees who are governed by statutory provisions) at the same time it is also recommended that in case the Government decides to continue with OTA for these categories of staff for which it is not statutory requirement, then the rate of OTA for such staff should be increased by 50% from their current levels.

Demand of the staff side:            OTA rates are revised in the year 1987. For the last 30 years no revision has taken place. Eventhough an arbitration award for enhancement is given, the same is also pending implementation for the last 20 years. After 7th CPC revision, one hour wage of an MTS is Rs. 75/- where as rate for one hour OTA is Rs.15.85 only!!! Hence it is requested that overtime allowance wherever sanctioned must be based upon the actual basic pay of the entitled employee.

11.    Dress Allowance

(a)  Para 08.16.14 may be referred. The 7th CPC recommended four slabs of Dress allowance per year for various categories of employees. In the Department of Posts there are about 75000 Postmen and Multi-Tasking staff wearing uniform.Their name is not mentioned in the category of employees shown in the table. Even if it is included in the other categories of staff, then the Dress Allowance per year will be Rs.5000/- only. At present the Postmen/MTS staff of Postal department are getting more than Rs.5000/- for uniform plus washing allowance. Hence it should be made clear under which category the Postmen and MTS staff of Postal department are to be included, in the dress allowance table recommended by the 7th CPC. These official may be granted Rs.10000/- as dress allowance.
(b) It is further demanded that the Dress Allowance ceiling to be raised to Rs.32400 per annum.
     (c) If cloth for dress is provided stitching charges should be revised reasonably.
     (d) Washing allowance should be increased from Rs.90/- to 150/- Rupees per month.

Yours faithfully
(D. Theagarajan)                                                                                            (R.N. Parashar)
Secretary General  FNPO                                                                         Secretary General