ASGEA holds a massive rally to thank CM for IT exemption
GANGTOK, June 29: More than 7000 government employees braved the rain to be a part of the Dhanyabaad rally organized by All Sikkim Government Employees Association (ASGEA) on June 28 as an expression of gratitude to the Chief Minister for having exempted government employees from Central Direct Taxes.
The rally saw the participation of government employees of all four grades from the 24 government departments. The rally started from Convoy Ground and was rounded up at Paljor Stadium where the Chief Minister addressed the mammoth gathering.
The Chief Minister was accorded a warm welcome by the government employees and offered flowers as a token of gratitude.
In his address, the Chief Minister said that government employees in Sikkim enjoy a lot of facilities in terms of salaries compared to other states in the country. He informed that government employees in Sikkim receive Rs 48,000 more than the employees of other states. Talking on income tax exemption for Sikkimese, he informed that all government employees would be exempted from Income Tax from the month of April 2008 in retrospective effect. It was our persistent effort and endeavor which has proved fruitful finally with the accomplishment of the demand, the CM said.
He informed that all those Sikkim Subject holders who carry business outside will be kept out from the tax purview and obtaining a Permanent Account Number (PAN) would be easier. The Chief Minister also assured that Sikkimese women who marry a non- Sikkimese would also be exempted from the Income Tax.
He further assured to try and work for exempting taxes for the business community and for those government employees who do not hold Sikkim Subject along with the assurance to increase the salaries of all the Work Charged, Adhoc and Muster Roll employees.
Stating that the Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF) government has always made the promotion criteria more flexible, Mr. Chamling appealed to the Grade D employees to further their education so that they have scope for promotion.
‘The MRs and WC employees would now get age relaxation up to 50 years in other departments and 30 years in Police Department to appear for examination held by the respective departments,” he announced.
“The State Government has devised a norm according to which posts will have to be filled 50 percent by recruitment and 50 percent by promotion. However, in Police Department the reservation would be 10 percent up to the rank of Assistant Sub Inspector rank and 50 percent from the rank of Sub Inspector,” he added.
While thanking the Chief Minister on behalf of all the government employees, Narsing Rai, president, ASGEA said that the present government had always worked for the welfare of the government employees and that in return all the government employees should work with more commitment and dedication towards their duties.
He also informed that rallies across the state were taken out simultaneously today including government offices in Siliguri, Delhi, Kolkata and other places.
“ASGEA is also in the process of submitting a charter of demands to the government,” he said adding, “earlier, the chief Minister had formed a committee headed by the Home Secretary to look into the grievances of government employees.”
“The exemption of the Central Direct taxes is the best gift the government employees have got from the State government and the Central government,” he added.