Maharashtra govt sets up committee to look into employees’ demand for revival of old pension scheme – The Indian Express

The Maharashtra government Monday decided to set up a committee to study the implications of reintroducing the old pension scheme (OPS).
Chief Minister Eknath Shinde and Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis held a meeting Monday with representatives of various organisations to discuss the issue.
The decision comes in the wake of various state government employee organisations calling for an indefinite strike starting Tuesday seeking the restoration of the OPS.
In an appeal to the employees, Shinde said: “I urge the state government employees not to go on strike from Tuesday. The state government is positively looking into the employees’ demand.”
Fadnavis, who holds the finance portfolio, has also urged the employees to call off their strike.
“The state government has constituted a committee of administrative officers to study the old pension scheme,” he announced. To reassure government employees, Fadnavis further said: “In principle, we agree that after retirement the employees should have financial security and live a life with dignity.”
According to one senior officer in the finance ministry, “The implementation of the old pension scheme would require Rs 1.10 lakh crore. The enforcement of the OPS would have adverse financial implications. But at the same time, the state government cannot overlook the public outcry. So, some balancing act is likely. We will have to wait for the committee’s report.”
At Monday’s meeting with the chief minister and the deputy chief minister, representatives of the Akhil Bharatiya State Government Mahasangh, Class Four Karmachari Mahasangh, Sikshak Bharati, Zilla Parishad Karmachari Mahasangh, University Teachers Employees Organisation, Madhyamik Vidhyalay Teachers Employees Union, Old Pension Organisation, Professors Organisation, and Primary Teachers Organisation participated.
Addressing the representatives, Shinde said: “The role of the employees in development is crucial. The elected member and government employee are two wheels of the chariot. The employees’ concern regarding pension is understandable. And the government is sympathetic towards it and not opposed to it in totality. The government’s mindset is to find a way forward.” The committee constituted will prepare a report in a time-bound manner, he added.
“Some states which have enforced the OPS have not prepared any roadmap. Whatever policy decision our government takes in regard to the OPS will ensure that retired employees’ interests are not compromised. The state government is not going to adopt any rigid stand and we urge employee organisations also to be flexible. The strike is not the solution. Instead, employees’ support to the government will help in resolving the issue,” the chief minister said.
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