Thursday, June 22, 2023
Wednesday, March 1, 2023
_I am still receiving anxious queries about the proposal to introduce in piecemeal Pension updation. I give my personal views on this._
_1) Pension is not Charity but a Right. That too, a Right under Pension Regulation, a subordinate Legislation and is therefore a Statutory Right._
_2) Pension is an entitlement to receive a prescribed sum under Bank Employees Pension Regulations (BEPR) and hence a Property protected under Article 300A of the Constitution. So Pension is a Constitutional Right too._
_3) Pension Updation has been made mandatory by amendment in 2003. It is incumbent upon IBA/Govt/Banks to incorporate Updation formulae for every Wage Revision. Having followed the Updation formula of the Govt., when BEPR was framed, the Govt. Updation formulae of subsequent Pay Commissions may be followed. Inasmuch as, RBI too followed the Govt. Updation formula when it framed its Pension Regulations and hence both RBI and BEPR had identical Updation formulae when Pension was introduced. RBI Updation formulae for subsequent periods may be followed. Whatever be the formula, incorporating Updation formula is a must because updation is Mandatory in terms of Regulation 35 (1) which reads as *“Basic pension and additional pension. wherever applicable SHALL BE UPDATED as per the FORMULAE GIVEN in Appendix I*.”_
_4) Please refer to Regulation 37(1) which reads as - *“ Dearness relief SHALL BE GRANTED on Basic Pension or Family Pension or Invalid Pension or on Compassionate allowance in accordance with the RATES SPECIFIED in Appendix II.”* Can IBA/Banks stop specifying the rates in Appendix II and hence no DA becomes payable and UFBU will also not press for it on cost consideration and tell in every platform that DA is NOT payable because rates are not specified in Appendix II. What is sauce for the goose is sauce for the gander too! If Regulation 37(1) makes DA mandatory and consequently publication of rates in Appendix II is mandatory, so also when Regulation 35(1) makes Updation Mandatory, publication of Updation formulae too becomes Mandatory._
_5) Cost can be a consideration only for introduction of a new Benefit, but, never for implementation of an EXiSTING Benefit. Pension updation in terms of Regulation 35(1) is an existing entitlement._
_6) Right to Pension and so also Right to Pension Updation gets vested in every Pensioner as soon as he/she Retires. A Right already vested in every Pensioner cannot be abridged, altered or abolished even by a mutually agreed settlement because this vested Right is a constitutionally protected Right to Property._
_7) Pensioners being one homogenous class, they cannot be subdivided and there can be no piecemeal implementation of a vested Right through any arbitrary sub-division._
_8) it is welcome that UFBU has now spelt out after AIBPARC’s notice to CLC that Pension Updation will be for all those who retired upto 31/10/2017, implying thereby Pension will be Updated upto the Wage Revision of XI Bipartite. But IBA is yet to make its stand clear about what it means by Past Retirees._
_9) Even for argument’s sake, a piecemeal implementation is proposed, is it of any use? For instance, if Updation is extended only to those who Retired before 1/11/2002, they are all (barring VRS pensioners) past 80 now and almost reached the actuary presumed Life expectancy. Statistically speaking Updation for the Retirees up-to 31/10/2002 should therefore require no funding. Further their Pension can be Updated only to the wage revision of 1/11/2002 and NOT beyond. One cannot update the Pension of those Retired before 1/11/2002 to the Wage Revision of 1/11/2007 and beyond WHILE not updating the Pension of those Retired between 1/11/2002 and 31/10/2007. Does a meagre Updation to the Wage Revision of 1/11/2002 after 36-20 years make any sense? Is it not a mockery and rubbing salt into our wounds? Does it not amount to treating the Senior Citizens as senile fools? In fact, 100% DA neutralization itself would bring more benefit to pre-Nov 2002 Retirees than this ridiculous insulting proposal of piecemeal implementation of Pension Updation. It has to be rejected lock, stock and barrel._
_10) How are we to stop it? Let us all be first convinced that:_
_a) there shall be no piecemeal Updation,_
_b) Pension Updation is mandatory and consequently publishing Updation formulae in Appendix I is also Mandatory,_
_c) Pension Updation is already a vested Right which cannot be altered, abridged, abolished or bypassed by any Bipartite settlement. Further, this matter is already before the SC (sub judice) and IBA/DFS/Banks cannot unilaterally change adversely the subject matter of writ appeals (ie prayer for implementation Pension Updation in terms of Regulation 35 (1) by publication of formulae as per Appendix I)._
*_Conrades, We have to fight arbitrary adverse proposals on the Streets and in Court Halls while continuing to request negotiating parties and Govt. to implement Pension Updation gracefully keeping with the tradition of this Nation that Respects Elders._*
_S. B. C. Karunakaran_
_Note : The above write up is by Com. S.B.C Karunakaran, President of our AIBPARC Tamilnadu State Unit, General Secretary, ARISE (IOB Retirees Association affiliated to AIBPARC and Working President of our National Organisation AIBPARC_
_K. Chandrasekaran, Secretary, AIBPARC Tamilnadu State Unit,_
_Chairman All India Indian Bank Pensioners and Retirees Association (AIIBPARA)_
_Vice President of AIBPARC_
Wednesday, February 1, 2023
Points to note in the proposal of Income Tax for F.Y 2023-24:
* In Old Regime of Tax, No changes made in any of the following provisions like
Basic exemption limit.i.e Rs.2,50,000,
Slabs, Rate of tax, deduction under various sections like 80C
Rebate, Senior citizen benefit etc.,
*All the changes announced are in New Regime only.
Also New Regime is made as default type.
Hence Old Regime tax system is made to loose its attraction in due course.
* Though the rates are attractive in New Regime, Savings habit of employees might diminish.
All the money after paying Income Tax, will be at the disposal of employee.
Intention to save by way of , Buying Residential property, taking Insurance policy (including various instruments under 80C) making additional contribution to NPS,
Taking Health Insurance policy,
etc., may decrease in due course.
* Still Basic exemption limit is only Rs.3,00,000 and not Rs.5,00,000 as promised by the present rulers in 2014.
Personal Income Tax as proposed for Financial year 2023-24 in the Budget tabled on 01.02.2023:
145. Now, I come to what everyone is waiting for -- personal income tax. I have five major announcements to make in this regard. These primarily benefit our hard-working middle class.
146. The first one concerns rebate. Currently, those with income up to Rs.5 lakh do not pay any income tax in both old and new tax regimes. I propose to increase the rebate limit to Rs.7 lakh in the new tax regime.
Thus, persons in the new tax regime, with income up to Rs. 7 lakh will not have to pay any tax.
147. The second proposal relates to middle-class individuals. I had introduced, in the year 2020, the new personal income tax regime with six income slabs starting from Rs.2.5 lakh. I propose to change the tax structure in this regime by reducing the number of slabs to five and increasing the tax exemption limit to Rs.3 lakh.
The new tax rates are:
*Rs.0-3 lakh Nil
*Rs.3-6 lakh 5 per cent
*Rs.6-9 lakh 10 per cent
*Rs.9-12 lakh 15 per cent
*Rs.12-15 lakh 20 per cent
Above Rs.15 lakh 30 per cent
148. This will provide major relief to all tax payers in the new regime. An individual with an annual income of
Rs.9 lakh will be required to pay only Rs.45,000/-.
This is only 5 per cent of his or her income.
It is a reduction of 25 per cent on what he or she is required to pay now, ie.Rs.60,000/-.
Similarly, an individual with an income of Rs.15 lakh would be required to pay only Rs1.5 lakh or 10 per cent of his or her income, a reduction of 20 per cent from the existing liability of Rs.1,87,500/.
149. My third proposal is for the salaried class and the pensioners including family pensioners, for whom I propose to extend the benefit of standard deduction to the new tax regime. Each salaried person with an income of
Rs. 15.5 lakh or more will thus stand to benefit by Rs.52,500.
150. My fourth announcement in personal income tax is regarding the highest tax rate which in our country is 42.74 per cent. This is among the highest in the world. I propose to reduce the highest surcharge rate from 37 per cent to 25 per cent in the new tax regime. This would result in reduction of the maximum tax rate to 39 per cent.
151. Lastly, the limit of Rs.3 lakh for tax exemption on leave encashment on retirement of non-government salaried employees was last fixed in the year 2002, when the highest basic pay in the government was Rs.30,000/- pm. In line with the increase in government salaries, I am proposing to increase this limit to Rs.25 lakh.
152. We are also making the new income tax regime as the default tax regime. However, citizens will continue to have the option to avail the benefit of the old tax regime.