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RBE No. 50/2019: Fixation of Pay – Bunching of Stages – 7th CPC – Clarifications

No.PC-VII/2016/RSRP/3, dated 13.03.2019
PC VII No.134

Sub: Bunching of stages of pay in the pre-7th CPC pay scales consequent upon fixation of pay in the revised pay scales based on 7th CPC – regarding.

1. Please refer to Board’s letter of even no. dated 27.09.2017 (RBE No. 139/2017) forwarding therewith a copy of Ministry of Finance, Department of Expenditure OM No.1-6/2016-IC, dated 03.08.2017 regarding clarification on bunching of stages in the revised pay structure under CCS (RP) Rules, 2016 for adoption of the same in Railways with respect to RS(RP) Rules, 2016.
2. Now Ministry of Finance, Department of Expenditure vide their OM No.1-6/2016-IC/E-IIIA, dated 07.02.2019 (copy enclosed) have issued further clarifications on the subject matter. The clarifications issued by Ministry of Finance, Department of Expenditure shall be applicable mutatis mutandis in Railways with respect to RS(RP) Rules, 2016.

Ministry Of Finance
Department of Expenditure
No.1-6/2016-IC/E-IIIA, dated 07.02.2019

Sub: Bunching of stages of pay in the pre-7th CPC pay scales consequent upon fixation of pay in the revised pay scales based on 7th CPC – regarding.

1. The undersigned is directed to invite attention to this Department’s OM No.1-6/2016-IC, dated 3rd August, 2017, explaining in detail the methodology for applying the principle of “bunching” consequent upon pay fixation in the revised pay scale (applicable Levels to the Pay Matrix) effective from 01.01.2016 based on implementation of the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission.
2. Notwithstanding the fact that the said OM dated 03.08.2017 has elaborately explained the issue of bunching in the context of the revised pay scale based on 7th Central Pay Commission, references are being received in this Ministry seeking clarification as to the methodology to carry out the principles of bunching. It is seen that some of the clarifications received seem to arise out of the position on bunching as obtaining during the pay structure in vogue based on 6th Pay Commission before 01.01.2016 vis-à-vis the position explained in terms of this Ministry’s aforesaid OM dt. 03.08.2017 in the context of pay structure currently in vogue from 01.01.2016 based on the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission.
3. Therefore, the matter has been considered keeping in view the clarifications sought and the issue is clarified heretofore. At the very outset, bunching as a sequel to pay fixation based on the formula for such pay fixation on the date of effect of revised pay scales based on the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission, is to be considered strictly as per the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission, as illustrated in para 5.1.37 of its report. The principle of bunching as recommended by the 7th Pay Commission, as accepted by the Government in terms of the erstwhile Implementation Cell’s OM dt. 07.09.2016 and 03.08.2017, is different from the principle recommended by the 6th Pay Commission and as accepted by the Government based thereon. Therefore, the principle of punching in the revised pay structure based on the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission is independent of the principle followed earlier and has no link thereto.
4. The 6th Central Pay Commission in para 2.2.21 of its Report recommended – “To alleviate the problem of bunching in these cases, the commission has allowed the benefit of one extra increment wherever two or more stages in any of the pre revised pay scales were getting bunched together at one level in the revised pay bands…… The Commission has prepared a detailed fixation chart which gives the fitment in the revised running pay bands in every stage”. However, in the fitment charts prepared by the 6th Pay Commission, the Commission illustrated the bunching meant by it. The example from the fitment tables prepared by the 6th Pay Commission are given in Annexure-I.
5. The same principle of bunching was adopted in terms of the fitment table prescribed by the Ministry of Finance, Department of Expenditure, as per the OM No.1-1/2008-IC, dated 30.08.2008. The examples of which are given in Annexure-II.
6. The 7th Pay Commission has dealt with the issue of bunching in paras 5.1.36 and 5.1.37, which are reproduced below:-

“5.1.36 Although the rationalization has been done with utmost care to ensure minimum bunching at most levels, however, if situation does arise whenever more than one stages are bunched together, one additional increment equal to 3 percent may be given for every two stages bunched, and pay fixed in the subsequent cell in the pay matrix.
5.1.37 For instance, if two persons drawing pay of Rs.53000 and Rs.54590 in the GP 10000 are to be fitted in the new pay matrix, the person drawing pay of Rs.53000 on multiplication by a factor of 2.57 will expect a pay corresponding to Rs.136210 and the person drawing pay of Rs.54590 on multiplication by a factor of 2.57 will expect a pay corresponding to Rs.140296. Revised pay of both should ideally be fixed in the first cell of Level 15 in the pay of Rs.144200 but to avoid bunching of the person drawing pay of Rs.54590 will get fixed in second cell of Level 15 in the pay of Rs.148 500.”

7. Accordingly, the essence of the recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission is contained in the above illustration given by the 7th Pay Commission. As per this illustration, the pay of Rs.53000 and Rs.54590 were the pay applicable in PB-4 + Grade Pay of Rs.10000 as applicable prior to 01.01.2016, which corresponds to Level-14 of the Pay Matrix applicable from 01.01.2016. The pay of Rs.54590 was 3% more than pay of Rs.53000. That is, these two pays were separated by a difference of 3% of Rs.53000. Thus, the pay of Rs.54590 was the stage next to the pay of Rs.53000. Considering that the 7th Pay Commission allowed the benefit of bunching at the level of the pay of Rs.54590 itself, it materially departed from the principle followed at the time of 6th Pay Commission because in the 6th Pay Commission regime the benefit was allowed at the 3rd consecutive stage and not at the 2nd stage itself (next page) for the purpose of bunching.
8. Furthermore, in the illustration given in para 5.1.37 of its report, the 7th Pay Commission has not mentioned about the pay in respect of pre-revised pay of Rs.56230, which is 3% more than the pay of Rs.54590. The revised pay fixed in the Level-14 with reference to the pre-revised pay of Rs.56230 will be Rs.148500 this will be the same as the pay to be given with the reference to the pre-revised pay of Rs.54590 after allowing bunching. However, the 7th Pay Commission did not recommend any additional benefit in such cases, as it did not include in its illustration for any benefit in case of the further stages of pre-revised pay, consequent upon bunching at the lower stage.
9. In view of the above the benefit of bunching consequent upon fixation of pay in the revised pay structure effective from 01.01.2016 based on the recommendation of the 7th Pay Commission is to be considered in the light of the above and clarifications already issued in terms of the aforesaid letter dated 03.08.2017, accordingly;
(i) Where consequent upon fixation of pay in terms of Rule 7(1)(A)(i) of CCS (RP) Rules, 2016, two different pay drawn in the pay structure obtaining immediately before 01.01.2016, which were separated by one another by 3% of the previous stage, are fixed at the same cell of the applicable Level of the Pay Matrix effective from 01.01.2016, then the benefit of bunching by way of one additional increment as on 01.01.2016 shall be admissible in respect of the pay which is more than 3% of the previous pay, as per the illustrations given by the 7th Pay Commission in para 5.1.37, as mentioned above. This is further illustrated as below:-
6th CPC Pay scale: PB-4 (37400-67000) 7th CPC Pay Scale –Level-13 + Grade Pay Rs.8700 (123100 – 215900)

6th CPC Pay Structure  (PB-4 and GP of Rs. 8700)

Pay fixation in 7th CPC Pay Matrix (Level-13)

Pay

Consolidation based on 2.57 multiple

Pay fixed as on 01.01.2016

Pay after bunching

46100

Rs.118477

Rs.123100

Rs.123100

47490

(46100 + 3%)

Rs.122049

Rs.123100

Rs.126800

(ii) In view of the position explained in para 8 above and the specific recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission as per its illustration given in para 5.1.37 of its report, no further action is to be taken after the benefit of bunching as a result of application of Rule 7(1)(A)(i), as indicated above. This is as illustrated below:-

6th CPC Pay Structure  (PB-4 and GP of Rs. 8700)

Pay fixation in 7th CPC Pay Matrix (Level-13)

Pay

Consolidation based on 2.57 multiple

Pay fixed as on 01.01.2016

Pay after bunching as on 01.01.2016

Remarks

46100

Rs.118477

Rs.123100

Rs.123100

 

47490

(46100+3%)

Rs.122049

Rs.123100

Rs.126800

Pay raised because of bunching.

48920

(47490+3%)

Rs.125724

Rs.126800

Rs.126800

No change.

10. In the light of the above, the points of clarification as referred to this Ministry are explained in Annexure-III.
11. These orders are issued after consultation with Comptroller and Auditor General of India in their application to the employees belonging to the Indian Audit and Accounts Department.
12. Hindi version of these orders is attached.

Annexure-I
The example taken from the Fitment Chart prepared by the 6th Pay Commission

Example 1:
Then existing scale = 8000-275-13500, 6th CPC Scale PB-3 (15600-39100)+Grade Pay Rs.5400

Stages in pre 2006 scale

Pay fixation without bunching

Pay fixation as per fitment chart of 6th CPC

Remarks

Pay in pay band (1.74 factor)

Grade Pay

 

1st

8000

15600

5400

21000

21000

This illustration in the fitment table given by the 6th CPC bring out that if 3 consecutive stages of pay in the pay scale obtaining prior to 01.01.2006 are bunched based on the formula for fixation of pay, then the benefit of bunching was to be given at the 3rd stage i.e. at the pre-revised pay of Rs.8550.

2nd

8275

15600

5400

21000

21000

3rd  

8550

15600

5400

21000

21390

Example-2:
Then existing scale = 14300-450-22400, 6th CPC scale PB-4 (39200-67000)+Grade Pay = Rs.9000

Stages in pre 2006 scale

Pay fixation without bunching

Pay fixation as per fitment chart of 6th CPC

Remarks

Pay in pay band (1.74 factor)

Grade Pay

 

1st

14300

39200

9000

48200

48200

Same as in the above example.

2nd

14750

39200

9000

48200

48200

3rd  

15200

39200

9000

48200

49180

Annexure-II
The example taken from the Fitment Table as per MoF OM dt. 30.08.2008

Example 1:
Then existing scale = 8000-275-13500, 6th CPC Scale PB-3 (15600-39100)+Grade Pay Rs.5400

Stages in pre 2006 scale

Pay fixation without bunching

Pay fixation as per fitment chart of 6th CPC

Remarks

Pay in pay band (1.86 factor)

Grade Pay

 

1st

8000

15600

5400

21000

21000

No bunching has been allowed at the 2nd stage even though 1st and 2nd stage are fixed at the same pay.

 

2nd

8275

15600

5400

21000

21000

3rd  

8550

15600

5400

21310

21310

Example-2:
Then existing scale = 14300-18300, 6th CPC scale PB-4 (37400-67000)+Grade Pay = Rs.8700

Stages in pre 2006 scale

Pay fixation without bunching

Pay fixation as per fitment chart of 6th CPC

Remarks

Pay in pay band (1.86 factor)

Grade Pay

 

1st

14300

37400

8700

46100

46100

It brings out that if 3 consecutive stages of pay in the pay scale obtaining prior to 01.01.2006 are bunched based on the formula for fixation of pay, then the benefit of bunching was to be given at the 3rd stage, as per the recommendation of 6th CPC.

2nd

14300

37400

8700

46100

46100

3rd  

14300

37400

8700

46100

47230

Annexure-III
Points of doubt raised and clarifications thereon

Sl.No.

Points of doubt

Clarification

1

Whether one increment of 3% constitute one stage or a difference of 3% among the pay of two officers constitute two stages.

As explained in this Ministry’s earlier OM dated 03.08.2017, the stages of every pay scale were well defined in the pay structure under 5th CPC regime and the stages were not well defined in the 6th CPC structures. Since there were no defined stages in the 6th CPC structure and as pay in the running pay band in the 6th CPC structure could be of any amount in multiple of Rs.10, as specific to an employee, it has been very clearly brought out therein, drawing upon the illustrations given by the 7th Pay Commission in para 5.1.37 of its Report, that a difference of at least 3%, the rate of annual increment in the 6th CPC structure, was essential for counting of two stages. Therefore, for the purpose of considering bunching, two pays drawn in a pay band with a particular Grade Pay, which are separated by 3% of the lower pay, are to be taken into account, as explained in the illustration given in para 9(i) of this order.

2

Whether the pay at Cell 1 of any Level may be taken as first stage.

Bunching is to be considered with reference to the consecutive stage of pay drawn in the pay structure obtaining prior to 01.01.2016, as explained in these orders, and as such a reference to Cell 1, which is in the revised pay structure, is not relevant.

3

Whether all pay stages lower than the entry pay in the 6th CPC pay structure are not to be taken into account for the purpose of bunching.

This point has been amply clarified in the aforesaid OM dated 03.08.2017. As mentioned in para 8(iv) thereof, all pay stages lower than the Entry pay in the 6th CPC pay structure as indicated in the Pay Matrix contained in 7th CPC Report are not to be taken into account for determining the extent of bunching.

4

Weather benefit of bunching should be given only where previous and current pay stages of the officers (specific to each employee) are getting bunched and placed at the same Level in the 7th CPC matrix without any comparison to any other officer’s pay as per para 5 and 8(iii) of this Department’s OM dated 03.08.2017 which stipulates that a difference of 3% to be reckoned for determination of consecutive stages, specific to each employee.

The position clarified in these orders covers this point. As explained in the illustration, the pre-revised pay of Rs.46100 and Rs.47490 are considered two stages of pay, as these are separated by 3% and these could be drawn by any two officers.

5

Weather benefit of bunching is to be given to a senior officer with the reference to the pay off his junior officer who is drawing less pay with the difference of 3% to the senior officer and now his pay got fixed in the same Level as that of the senior officer.

The issue of bunching is not a matter of pay drawn by a Senior Officer vis-à-vis a Junior Officer. As explained in these orders, bunching happens as in the illustration given in these orders and as such this is not related to the issue of seniority.

6

Whether the benefit of bunching is also required to be given to a senior officer where his junior’s pay has got fixed in the same Cell as that of the senior due to the benefit of bunching of pay given to the junior.

7

Whether the benefit of bunching may also be extended on account of bunching of two stages of Pre-revised pay of a Government servant alone.

It is not clear how two stages drawn by a single Government servant are relevant for pay fixation on 01.01.2016, as only the pay drawn on 31.12.2015 is to be taken into account for pay fixation on 01.01.2016.

8

Whether the benefit of bunching may be extended only on direct pay fixation where the pay of two officers in the pre-revised pay scale with a difference of 3% get fixed at the same stage in the revised pay structure (7th CPC) or also on further bunching with the next higher pay stage due to grant of additional increment to an officer for bunching on initial/ direct pay fixation.

As explained in the illustration contained in para 9 of these orders no such benefit is admissible in such cases.

Download Railway Board Circular RBE No. 50/2019

Forward reference⇒RBE No.

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