Prithvi Man Shrestha, The Kathmandu Post, August 21, 2019
Government may have to spend additional Rs1.3 billion to cover increased pay, Pension Management Fund says.
Retired government employees have witnessed a rise in their pensions after the government hiked the salary of civil servants from this fiscal year.
According to the Pension Management Fund, the pension of retired non-gazetted fourth-ranked officers (Bahidars) has increased by Rs 2,300 and that of retired chief secretaries by Rs 6,627.
Likewise, the pensions of retired peons have increased by Rs 2,167 to Rs 2,952 based on their ranks. Retired mail carriers also saw their pensions rise from Rs 2,213 to Rs 2,980.
For retired drivers of light vehicles, the pension sums rose from Rs 2,447 to Rs 3,627 depending on their ranks before leaving the service. The pensions of retired heavy vehicle operators have increased from Rs 2,653 to Rs 3,793.
According to Hemanta Raj Niraula, office chief of Pension Management Fund, the pension hikes were decided based on the salary raise of incumbent civil servants.
For retired health service employees, those who retired from the post of ‘assistant first’ have got a pension raise by Rs 2,167. Those who retired from the position of officer (12th level) saw their pension increase by Rs 6,173 per month.
The Pension Management Fund has also increased the pension scales of retired Nepal Army staffers by Rs 2,167 for non-combatant officers (first class) to Rs 6,627 for retired army chief.
The pensions of retired police personnel, both from the Nepal Police and the Armed Police Force, have also increased based on their ranks. Pension for lowest ranking police personnel (followers) increased by Rs 2,167 while that of inspectors general rose by Rs 6,173.
The pensions of retired National Investigation Department staff also increased on part with their counterparts in the two police forces.
For retired teachers, pensions rose from Rs 2,300 for the lowest ranking teachers to Rs 4,820 for the highest-ranking teachers.
According to Niraula, the government will have to spend an estimated Rs1.3 billion on pensions every month with the latest pension revision.
The government spending on pensions grew by as high as 67 percent over the last five years, according to the Pension Management Fund.
In the fiscal year 2014-15, the government had spent Rs26 billion on pensions, which rose to Rs43.56 billion in the fiscal year 2018-19, according to the Pension Management Fund.
Niraula said there are over 271,000 pensioners in the country.