Is raising retirement age of Central Government Employee a threat for employment prospects of youth ?
Nearly 71 per cent of India's elderly aged between 60 to 80 years are compelled to work, said a survey conducted by United Nation Population Fund (UNFPA) India. The survey, partnered with many other organisations, noted that 71 per cent elderly work due to economic necessity and not by choice, and that there is a close link between current work participation and poverty and illiteracy.
The survey was done in seven states - Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Odisha, West Bengal, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh - where higher elderly proportion exist. Released on November 19, the survey was conducted on the socio-economic status, work participation and benefits, income and asset holding, living arrangement patterns and familial relations, health status, utilisation and financing of health care, and reach and awareness of social security schemes among the elderly.
Giving a snapshot of the work and income status of elders in India, the survey indicated that the work participation rate among elderly males is 39 per cent as against 11 per cent among women. Majority of them were aged between 60 and 69 years. "Even the 13 per cent of elderly men and three per cent of women who are 80 years of age and above work," it said. [source:http://ibnlive.in.com]
At the end of Every Year people used to talk about the proposal of raising the retirement age of government servants. Normally the people who are at the verge of retirement from government service are eagerly expecting the government to increase the retirement age. The Government servants especially those who are in the pay structure of Pay band –I will have to face financial burden as the Pension amount they will be paid after commutation will be very meager and it is not sufficient enough to meet their expenses of day to day life. Because the Government employees those who are drawing grade pay of Rs.1800/-, 1900/-, 2000/-, 2400/-and 2800/- will get only around Rs.20000 as the gross salary of every month. It is understood that one cannot lead a financially successful life with this income alone. So many government servants, to run the life, forced to avail loans from where ever they can get. At the end, they are badly in debt at the time of retirement. That is why the government servants don’t feel happy about retiring from service. But extending the service of two years from 60 to 62 will not solve all their problems. It will help them to put off facing the financial crisis for at least two years. But the Government does not consider this aspect any way to increase the retirement age of central government employees from 60 to 62.
Extension of Service to Bureaucrats
The Central Government always wanted to make better use of the knowledge and experience of its Bureaucrats even after their retirement. In other words Government wants to secure their top brass preferably IAS officers by giving service extension. Sometime extending their service for further period of two year is difficult task for the concerned department. Extension in service can be given only in “exceptional circumstances”. For example recently home Ministry wanted to give one year extension to its former Director-General of the Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) as he has done commendable work in his stint . But it was denied by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet (ACC). However, it was mainly the service rules that led to the ACC declining Home Ministry’s proposal. Normally IAS officers offered multiple service extension.
The Retirement Age of Professors
The Central Government has already increased the retirement age of professors in all the central universities from 62 to 65 years, two years back. Before that, the retirement age of professors of Central Universities was 62 with the provision for re-employment for three years after the superannuation. That time there was some allegation that this provision of re-employment was being “misused” by the authorities who took such decisions in an “arbitrary” manner. So Central Government decided to increase the retirement age of Professors to 65 uniformly.
One year extension for state government employees
Recently the Punjab government’s decided to offer an extension of one year in service to its retiring employees with effect from October 2012 . The condition laid down for this offer was 1.Employees will be given an option to continue at the same salary.2. They will get no increments in salary during the extension period but will get any due promotions. The decision to give the extension was taken to meet the shortage of 35,000 employees who are expected to retire in next one year. Since, the move may affect employment prospects of the youth, the government increased the maximum age limit for recruitment into government service from 37 to 38 years.
The Retirement Age of Judges
On August 18, 2012, The Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, speaking at the 150th year celebrations of the Bombay High Court, said the government was in favour of raising the age of retirement of High Court judges. Presently, Supreme Court judges retire at 65 and High Court judges at 62.
Re engagement of Retired Employees in Railways
Whether it is true or not but it is believed that Railway gave its consensus to raise the retirement age of its employees, as it is already re-engaging their retired employee for daily remuneration after their retirement till the age of 62. It was followed from 1998 with the reference of Railway Board Letter No.E(NG)II/97/RC-4/8 dated 03.02.98. In 2009 the rates of Daily Allowances also revised for engagement of retired employees on daily remuneration basis.
So keeping in view of the entire above aspects one can assume that the state and central governments and some Departments are in fovour of increasing the retirement age of Central and State government employees.
But Social Activists and youth associations are against this proposal and they expressed their dissatisfaction over this and telling that the retirement age of central government employees should not be increased to 62 as increasing the retirement age is a threat for employment prospects of the youth.Many of them opined that instead of increasing, the retirement age should be reduced to 58 so that the youngsters will be given opportunity to get into Central government services.
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