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Armed forces seek 50% pay hike

Last updated on: March 28, 2008 16:59 IST

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Ratcheting up their protests one notch, the three service chiefs met Defence Minister AK Antony today to tell him the Sixth Pay Commission's recommendations relating to the services were inadequate and would not prevent attrition.

The three chiefs said they wanted an average increase of 50 to 60 per cent in salaries, whereas all the pay commission offered was 28 to 33 per cent hike.

Substantive issues like making the Military Service Pay a percentage of the salary, a bigger increase in hardship allowances and a more generous transport allowance were mooted.

The services have already written to the finance ministry pointing out anomalies in the time frame in which the pay commission award will come into effect -- it will be applicable to the services only after the pay commission's report is accepted by the government, whereas the civil services will get arrears dating back to January 2006.

The meeting, which lasted more than 90 minutes, was also attended by Defence Secretary Vijay Singh.

The services, according to sources, were also up in arms against the commission's recommendation of single pay band for soldiers, personnel below officer rank and for officers up to the rank of Brigadiers.

Image: Indian paramilitary soldiers march during the Republic Day parade. | Photograph: Raveendran/AFP/Getty Images

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BS Reporter in New Delhi