Proposed pay hike highest in 29 years
The proposed pay hike for government employees is the highest in 29 years and the second highest since the independence of Bangladesh.
The eighth pay commission, the latest one, recommended the basic salary of the public servants be raised by more than 100 percent, while the third pay commission, in 1985, had proposed a 168 percent increase on average.
The main reason behind the hike this year is that the commission took into account a six-member family of an employee, including his parents.
The previous commissions had set the salary and allowances for a four-member family, including two children.
The eighth commission, headed by former Bangladesh Bank governor Mohammed Farashuddin, submitted a report to the government on December 22.
In 1985, the third pay commission had recommended a 186 percent increase for the employees in the lowest grade, and a 150 percent hike for the highest grade.
The third commission was formed eight years after the second in 1977, although the government usually reviews the pay scale every five years.
Determining the salary structure for the lowest grade was the first task of the latest commission.
A member of the commission said the salary for the higher grades could be set proportionately once the salary of the lowest grade is fixed.
For the lowest grade, the commission estimated the monthly average expenditure of a six-member family at Tk 11,816 on the basis of the latest household income and expenditure survey.
However, considering the demand for food and nutrition, the expenditure for a six-member family has been estimated at Tk 15,497.
Taking the expenditure and inflation into consideration, the commission estimated the basic salary in the lowest grade at Tk 8,600, and finally recommended Tk 8,200.
The total salary for the lowest grade will be Tk 17,450, including seven types of allowances, which is a 110 percent hike from the present salary of Tk 8,275.
The total salary in the highest grade would be Tk 142,833, a 104 percent increase.
The government had implemented the pay commission recommendations in full only in 1973 and 1977.
In 2008, the government had finally implemented 102.5 percent of the proposed salary in the lowest grade and 88.9 percent in the highest grade.
Of the other five commissions, the implementation rates were 75-85 percent in the lowest grade and 75-83 percent in the highest grade. However, the report said the salary hike does not help the employees much, as the government usually does not implement the recommendations fully.