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Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Prospects of enhanced pay appears to brighten for armed forces

Prospects of an enhanced pay package for the armed forces personnel appeared to brighten on Tuesday after a crucial meeting of the three service chiefs with the empowered group of secretaries headed by Cabinet Secretary K M Chandrashekar.

Though no official word was available, the three chiefs -Admiral Sureesh Mehta of Navy, Air Chief Marshal F H Major and Army Chief General Deepak Kapoor- are understood to have apprised the members of the empowered committee of widespread dissatisfaction in the armed forces rank and file over the Sixth Pay Commission Report.

The armed forces have pressed for a 100-200 per cent hike in the newly introduced Military Service Pay for personnel below officer rank and its payment with the retrospective effect from January 1, 2006.

The forces are also seeking rectification of what they see as an "undermining" of status and lowering of pay-scales including grade pay of middle ranking officers from Captains to Brigadiers.

The armed forces in their case say that these officers have been equated with scales lower than civil service.

The army is also seeking parity in status of Lt Generals of Corp Commanders rank with Director Generals of the Central Paramilitary Forces, as before.

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