ISLAMABAD (Dunya News) - Finance Minister Ishaq Dar, during his Budget 2017-18 speech on Friday, announced a salary raise for government employees in the country. A 10pc raise in the salaries has been given to the people working in government sector.
According to details, ad-hoc reliefs added in 2009-10 will be incorporated into the salaries. A 10% special allowance will also be provided in the salaries of Pakistan Army soldiers.
10 percent raise has been announced in salaries as well as pensions of government employees. The main points of Budget 2017 with regard to relief for government employees and pensioners include:
(1) A 10% ad hoc relief allowance for all civil and armed forces employees
(2) 10% increase in pensions
(3) Up to BPS-5 employees exempted from paying house-rent charges at the rate of 5%
(4) Daily allowance - domestic - increased by 60%
(5) Orderly allowance revised from Rs.12,000 to Rs.14,000
(6) Rate for transportation of dead bodies and local burial revised from Rs.1,600 to Rs.4,800 and Rs.5,000 to Rs.15,000 respectively
(7) Constant attendant allowance admissible to Armed Forces and CAF increased from Rs.3,000 to Rs.7,000
(8) Different allowances for offices and sailors of Pakistan Navy revised including; hard-lying pay, compensation for batman, uniform allowance and ration allowance
(9) Design allowance increased by 50%
(10) For employees of Pakistan Post, certain rates of allowances revised
(11) The salary structure of Jawans of the Frontier Constabulary made attractive by giving Rs. 8,000 per month fixed allowance.
(12) The minimum wage of labour increased from Rs.14,000 to Rs.15,000 per month.
Let us take a look at the previous trends of relief for federal government employees in annual budgets.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2016-17
Last year, 10% ad hoc relief allowance on running basic pay was allowed to all federal government employees. Special Conveyance Allowance of Rs 1000/month was given to disabled employees and Rs 300 per month for civil armed forces, posted in border areas. 10% increase was recommended in net pension of all pensioners of federal government, while 25% increase in net pension was given to pensioners above the age of 85 years. An increase of Rs 57 billion was estimated for pay and pensions relief.
Relief for govt employees in Budget 2016 can be summed up as:
1) Ad hoc increases of 2013 and 2014 were merged in the pay scales.
2) 10% Ad hoc Relief Allowance on running basic pay was allowed to all federal government employees.
3) Special Area Compensatory Allowance at the uniform rate of Rs 300 per month from Rs 50- 210 for civil armed forces, posted in border areas.
5) Special Conveyance Allowance to disabled employees of Rs 1000/month.
6) Revision of Outfit Allowance was given to Pakistan Army officers on their secondment to civil armed forces and reversion to army from Rs 800 to Rs 2500 and from Rs 500 to Rs 2000, respectively.
7) The minimum wage of labour was increased from Rs 13,000 to Rs 14,000 per month.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2015-16
7.5% ad hoc relief allowance was given on running basic pay of all federal government employees. 7.5% increase in net pension of all pensioners was announced, with 25% increase in medical allowances of pensioners.
The salient features of relief for federal govt employees in Budget 2015 were:
1) 7.5% ad hoc relief allowance on running basic pay.
2) Medical allowances of all government employees were enhanced by 25%
3) A premature increment was given to employees of grade 5.
4) The rates of special pay to senior private secretaries, private secretaries and assistant private secretaries were increased by 100%
5) The rate of orderly allowance and special additional pension was increased to Rs 12,000 per month.
6) The minimum wage rate was increased from Rs 12,000 to Rs 13,000 per month, for the betterment of labour class.
7) A 7.5% increase in net pension was announced for the pension of the retired government servants.
8) Medical allowances of pensioners were enhanced by 25%.
9) Upper limit of investment in Bahbood Saving Scheme of National Savings by the pensioners and senior citizens was enhanced from Rs 3 million to Rs 4 million.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2014-15
10% ad hoc relief was applied to basic pay of all federal government employees working countrywide. Another 10% increase in pension of all retired federal government employees was given in Budget 2014-15.
The salient features of Budget 2014 with regard to relief for government employees was:
(a) 10% ad-hoc relief for federal government employees
(b) 20% increase allowed for govt employees in Grade-1 to 15 drawing fixed medical allowance of Rs.1000 per month.
(c) 5% increase given in conveyance allowance to those employees working in Grade-1 to 15.
(d) The post of superintendent was upgraded from Grade-16 to Grade-17.
(e) One pre-mature increment was allowed to employees of Grade-1 to 4.
(f) for the relief of labour class, the minimum wage rate was increased from Rs.10,000 to Rs.12,000.
Also, an increase of Rs.1000 was made in minimum pension to make it Rs.6000 for the year 2014-15.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2013-14
In the first year of PML-N government after heavy mandate in 2013 elections, salary increase was not given to government employees which was compensated in the next year s budget. However, 10pc increase in pensions of retired government employees was announced.
An additional relief was given to low pensioners, whose minimum pension was increased from Rs 3000 to Rs 5000.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2012-13
In the last year of PPP-led coalition, government employees gained an ad hoc relief allowance of 20% in their basic pay and pensions. PPP government announced salary raise for government employees throughout the five years.
It was stated in the Budget 2012 speech PPP government always made an effort to ensure that government servants do not face acute hardships on account of low public sector salaries vis-à-vis the private sector.
"To ensure that the government acquires and retains competent civil servants who can serve the citizens of Pakistan with peace of mind, our government has increased pay by more than 100% during the last four years," it said.
Five successive increase in pay and pension were given by the PPP-led coalition government.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2011-12
As a huge salary raise was given to federal government employees in Budget 2010, an ad hoc monthly allowance equal to 50% of basic pay, lower relief was given in Budget 2011 due to tight financial position.
Pensioners who retired on or after July 1, 2002 were allowed pension increase of 15%, while those retired on or before June 30, 2002 were allowed pension increase of 20%.
Existing Conveyance Allowance was increased by 25% to all the employees in BPS 1-15 and their equivalent in the Armed Forces. 15% increase in pay of all government employees and the personnel of armed forces was announced.
All the ad-hoc relief allowances granted up to 01.07.2009 were merged in the Basic Pay Scales-2008 to introduce the new pay scales.
Moreover, it was noted that the salary structure of the government was distorted. An attempt was made to establish an independent commission to examine the structure of pay and allowances across the public services to bring equity and fairness across them.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2010-11
The third year of PPP-led coalition in the country provided relief for government servants with an ad hoc monthly allowance equal to 50% of their one month’s basic pay, except for those who already receive monthly allowance equal to one month’s basic pay. Medical allowance for government employees in BS-1 to 15 were doubled, for BPS-16 to 22 it was increased to 15% of monthly basic pay.
Pensioners who retired after 2001 were allowed 15% increase and those who retired prior to 2001 were allowed 20% increase in pensions. Also, pensioners who retired in BPS 1 to 15 were allowed medical allowance at 25% of pension drawn while those retired in BPS 16 to 22 were allowed medical allowance at 20% of pension drawn. The minimum monthly pension was proposed to be raised from Rs. 2000 to Rs. 3000, and rate of family pension was proposed to be enhanced from 50% to 75%.
Salaries & pensions in Budget 2009-10
PPP-led coalition provided 15% ad hoc relief allowance which was regulated on July 1, 2009, along with increasing allowances of armed forces to make it equal to one month’s initial basic pay. Also, an adhoc relief allowance of 15% of pay was allowed in the interim period which was withdrawn on December 31, 2009.
In order to provide relief for retired government servants and armed forces personnel, a 15% increase in net pension was announced. The limit for the exemption on Income Tax for salaried male was enhanced from Rs 180,000 to Rs 200,000 and that of salaried female from Rs 240,000 to Rs 260,000. The senior citizens were given 50% relief in tax liability in case of income up to Rs. 750,000, the limit was previously Rs. 500,000.
The story was compiled by Umair Sohail.