March pay delay upsets AP employees' finances
DECCAN CHRONICLE | Sampat G Samaritan
Vijayawada: AP’s state treasury’s directive that wage bills of March not be processed for regular government employees and those working in corporations owing to lack of funds has raised serious concerns.
State government employees are already used to their payment of wages being received in the second or third week of the month for past three months. But the treasury’s directive that web portal – Comprehensive Financial Management System (CFMS) – not entertain March 2022–23 wages has led to major concerns.
Employees generally upload their wage bills by 20th of every month on the web portal. Treasury approves these wages and remits them into the employees’ bank accounts normally in the first week of the month.
However, March 31, 2023 marks the end of financial year. With wage bills not even being uploaded yet, it means employees may not get their wages for March for quite some time to come in April.
So is the case with employees of nearly 170 corporations and those working on contract and outsourcing basis.
Employees say they have to pay monthly rent of their houses, EMIs for several kinds of loans, payment of fees for their children to pursue education during the new academic year, and meet household expenditure. It will become very difficult for them to manage all such expenditure with no wages.
With the new financial year 2023–2024 starting, employees realise that the budget for the year will have to be approved, money distributed department-wise, release of amounts ordered and the same credited into bank accounts before employees can draw any money.
Employees allege that last fiscal also, their wages for March had got delayed. Regular employees received the wages in April. Those working in corporations got their March, April and May salaries at a time in June.
A senior employee belonging to a corporation said, "Lack of adequate funds and diversion of available funds for welfare schemes are said to be among reasons for delayed payment of wages. Our appeal to the government is that it keeps some amount in our PD accounts just to meet wage bills, so that we can get wages for March in April of the new financial year, instead of June."
Incidentally, finance minister Buggana Rajendranath recently informed the state legislature that AP government will be according top priority to payment of welfare pensions. He went on to underline that there will be some delay in clearing wage bills of state government employees even in the new financial year.