In a major cabinet decision, the government has decided to give pay bonus of 78 days to over 11 lakh Railway employees for which the government will incur an expense of Rs 2024 crore.
“The Union Cabinet chaired by the Prime Minister Narendra Modi has approved the payment of Productivity Linked Bonus (PLB) equivalent to 78 days wages to over 11.52 Lakh eligible non-gazetted railway employees (excluding RPF/RPSF personnel) for the Financial Year (FY) 2018-19, for maintaining industrial peace and motivation of railwaymen. This entails an expenditure of Rs. 2024.40 crores to the exchequer,” an official release said.
This is the sixth consecutive year that the Modi government has maintained a bonus of 78 days wages. It would result in motivating a large number of railway employees to improve the performance of the Railways and enhance the productivity levels further, besides maintaining industrial peace, the release added.
It may be noted that Railways was the first departmental undertaking of the government wherein the concept of Productivity Linked Bonus was introduced in the year 1979-80.
The main consideration at that time was the important role of the Railways as an infrastructural support in the performance of the economy as a whole. In the overall context of Railway working, it was considered desirable to introduce the concept of PLB as against the concept of Bonus on the lines of ‘The Payment of Bonus Act – 1965’.
For financial year 2017-18, the Cabinet had approved the payment of PLB equivalent to 78 days’ wages for the for all eligible non-gazetted Railway employees (excluding RPF/RPSF personnel) which was estimated to cost the government Rs 20,44.31 crore.
Among other major Cabinet decisions taken today, the government has approved the Promulgation of the Prohibition of Electronic Cigarettes (production, manufacture, import, export, transport, sale, distribution, storage and advertisement) Ordinance, 2019.
The decision to prohibit e-cigarettes will help protect population, especially the youth and children, from the risk of addiction through E-cigarettes, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said..
E-cigarettes are battery-operated devices that produce aerosol by heating a solution containing nicotine, which is the addictive substance in combustible cigarettes.