There would also be a sixty percent deferment to IAS, IPS and IFS cadre and fifty percent to the rest of the government employees apart from class IV employees, for whom there would be ten percent deferment in their salaries.

Senior citizens lament Telangana govts decision to deduct their pension
news Coronavirus Wednesday, April 01, 2020 - 18:53

“How can a state, which claimed that it was self-sufficient and rich enough to handle the coronavirus crisis, suddenly become poor within a week? That too, in such a way that they are forcibly taking away money from pensioners as well?”

This was a question posed by the Telangana government pensioners Joint Action Committee (JAC) after the state government decided to defer the salaries of public representatives, employees and pensioners, in order to mobilise funds to fight the COVID-19 pandemic. 

 In its official Government Order (GO) the state said that “Government keeping in view of the economic impact caused due to lockdown and consequent lack of inflow of resources and in the view of additional expenditures being incurred to control COVID-19, hereby orders deferment on payment of wages/salaries, including all allowances and perks/pensions etc.”

 Accordingly, there shall be a deferment of 75 percent in the gross salary of all public representatives, including the Chief Minister, Ministers and MLAs.

 There will also be a sixty percent deferment to IAS, IPS and IFS cadre officials, and fifty percent to the rest of the government employees apart from class IV employees, for whom there would be ten percent deferment in their salaries.

 Regarding pensioners, the government in its orders stated that “In respect of retired employees, similar deferment would be there as per the category of the employee.”

 “All the pensioners are above 60 years of age and most of them have monthly medical expenses which cannot be put aside. In these circumstances, the state government without even consulting us, has taken a decision to defer our pensions. How is it fair? There is no clarity on anything. We don’t know till when they would deduct our pensions or when the deducted money would be deposited back,” says Krishnamurthy Palakurthy, a retired employee.

 "Since the government order, I am getting distress calls from my fellow retired employees. They are nervous on how their expenses would be managed with half of the salaries, when they already have monthly rents and mandatory medical expenses to pay,” he added.

The state government pensioners Joint Action Committee (JAC) said that they are also thinking of approaching the court, appealing to the state government not to deduct their pensions.

Salaries of Anganwadi and Asha workers, who are on the front line in the fight against COVID-19, will also be deferred by ten percent starting from this month, and will continue till further orders.

 "We have not received any information directly apart from seeing in the news that our salary would get deferred. Each Anganwadi worker receives a salary of about Rs.10,500 per month and some of them are single earners in their family too, like me," says Saritha (name changed), an anganwadi teacher.  

 "But what can we do? Though it is a bit difficult, we have to think of it as our help to the state on a humanitarian basis," she added. Several other employee associations are upset as they were not even consulted before taking a decision regarding their salaries.

 “Government could have asked for funds from the central government or requested an overdraft from the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) instead of cutting our salaries. It doesn’t seem to be due to coronavirus alone, but it seems that they are imposing the general deficit of the state on employees," Chava Ravi from United Teachers Federation (UTF) says.

 "How can salaried employees who are dependent on their monthly incomes for house rents, EMIs, children's education, loans survive with half of the salary?” he asks.

 The teachers union has also taken the matter to the notice of the state government, after which it was decided that the fifty percent of the salary, post deferment, will be given without any cuts that are usually made from the side of the government. However an official order stating the same needs to be made public, sources said.

 

 

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