No move to reduce retirement age of central govt employees: Personnel Minister

New Delhi, Apr 26 (PTI) There is no move to bring down the retirement age of central government employees, Minister of State for Personnel Jitendra Singh said on Sunday, refuting reports in a section of media that there was a proposal to retire the employees early.

Central government staff retire at the age of 60.

Strongly refuting the reports that the government has moved a proposal for reducing the retirement age of government employees to 50 years, the minister said, 'There is no such move to reduce the retirement age nor (there) has been such a proposal discussed or contemplated at any level in the government,' according to an official communique.

Singh said, there are certain motivated elements which have been planting such disinformation time and again in a section of media over the last few days and attributing it to the government sources or the Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT).

He said, each time a prompt rebuttal is sought to be made in order to clear the confusion in the minds of stakeholders.

Singh said, it was unfortunate that at a time the country is going through the coronavirus crisis, there are certain elements and vested interests which try to underplay all the good works done by the government by planting such media stories, according to the the communique.

On the contrary, right from the beginning of the emergence of the coronavirus challenge, the government and the DoPT have taken prompt decisions to safeguard the interests of the employees, the minister said. For example, he said, even before the lockdown was officially announced, the DoPT had issued an advisory for the offices to work with “absolutely necessary or minimum staff”.

Even though essential services were exempted from this guideline, the DoPT had issued directions to exempt the “Divyang employees even from the essential services”, the statement said, quoting the minister.

Considering the constraints of the lockdown, he recalled that the DoPT had postponed the last date for filling of the Annual Performance Appraisal Report (APAR) by the government officials.

At the same time, Singh referred to the UPSC's decision to reschedule the dates of civil services civil exam interview/personality test and also announced that the civil services preliminary test will be done after May 3, the statement said.

Similarly, the SSC has also postponed its process of recruitment, it said.

Singh said that last week there was fake news that the government had decided to impose a 30 per cent reduction in the pension and discontinue pensions for those who are above the age of 80.

'However, contrary to this, the truth is that on the 31st of March there was not a single pensioner whose pension did not deposit in his account. Not only this, services of the postal department were sought to deliver the pension amount at the residence of the pensioners, whenever required,” the minister was quoted as having said in the statement.

The Ministry of Personnel has had video conference consultations for senior citizens across 20 cities where pulmonary advice was given by experts like Randeep Guleria, Director (AIIMS), he said.

Similarly, yoga sessions on webinar are also being organised, Singh added. PTI AKV TIR TIR