8th Wage Board announces for newspaper employees with consensus

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ISLAMABAD: The 4th Meeting of the 8th Wage Board Award was held under the Chairmanship of Mr. Justice Hasnat Ahmad Khan at Islamabad today.

During the last meeting held on 2nd April, 2019 the employees’ representatives demanded for passing of interim award contending that the newspaper employees are facing serious financial difficulties due to the mounting increase of cost of living and rising inflation in Pakistan.

Conversely the employers’ representatives highlighted the adverse circumstances relating to newspaper industry in different regions of the Country. However after a marathon discussion on the issue of interim relief for newspaper employees a general consensus regarding most of the terms for issuance of interim award was developed between the parties.

Today after a long and lengthy discussion both the parties agreed for passing of unanimous interim award in the wages of newspaper employees in terms of section 16 of the Newspaper Employees (Condition of Service) Act, 1973 and thereafter all the members of the board in attendance signed a written unanimous agreement for passing of interim award to the following effect:

i) For all Newspapers in category Metropolitan “A” a) Grade Special and above Rs: 8,500 p.m. b) Grade I to IV Rs: 6,500 p.m. c) Grade V to VIII Rs: 5,000 p.m.

ii) All Newspapers in category Metropolitan ‘B’ shall pay at the rate of 50% of that determined for category Metropolitan ‘A’ above.

iii) All Newspapers in category Regional shall pay at the rate of 35% of that fixed for category Metropolitan ‘A’ above.

iv) All News Agencies in category ‘A’ shall pay at the same rate as allowed in respect of Newspapers in category Metropolitan ‘A’ above.

v) All News Agencies in category ‘B’ shall pay at the rate of 50% of the News Agencies in category ‘A’.

vi) The decision of interim increase in wages shall take effect from 1st February 2019.

vii) The rates of interim increase in wages of Newspaper Employees as a result of above consensus would be subject to adjustment in the final award of the Board.

viii) The incumbent of the post of Managing Director in the Associated Press of Pakistan will be deemed to fall in the category of Special Grade.

ix) All newspapers will pay interim relief by adjustment of any existing bilateral interim reliefs or provisional payments designed to adjust interim relief and the balances if any will be paid as required.

x) In case the relief already granted by the newspaper establishments, covered by this interim award / decision, is in excess of the relief granted hereby, the said establishments shall continue to pay the said excess interim relief in future irrespective of the instant interim award.

(-2- xi) The award of 7th Wage Board except to the extent decided hereby shall remain in force till final decision/award of the 8th Wage Board under section 11(2) of The Newspaper Employees (Conditions of Service) Act, 1973.

xii) All the newspaper establishments whether member of APNS or not shall pay the interim relief granted in the light of decision made on the agreed formula.

xiii) That the Federal as well as Provincial Governments and other semi government establishments shall ensure that the advertisement are only issued to the newspapers establishments which implement the decisions of the Wage Board.

xiv) It is recommended that the Federal and Provincial Governments should increase the basic advertisement Rates in accordance with the increase in CPI rate.

xv) It has been agreed between the parties that the Chairman of the 8th Wage Board would recommend strongly for the payment of outstanding dues of the advertisements to the newspaper establishments by the Federal and Provincial Governments in accordance with law / rules before the end of current fiscal year.

The next meetings of the board will be held on 19th & 20th April in Quetta and Karachi respectively. It was resolved in the meeting that both the parties will produce duly sworn and attested affidavits of the witnesses to be produced in their favor respectively on the said dates at their own cost.

Besides that the employers’ representatives would intimate the owners of the newspaper establishments belonging to said areas about the said meetings and proceedings of the Board to be conducted in the said meeting so that they may participate in the said proceedings, if so advised. Both the parties congratulated each other on passing of the interim award with consensus.

The meeting concluded with a vote of thanks by the Chairman to all the participants of the meeting. Apart from the Chairman of the Board the meeting was attended by Mr. Hameed Haroon (President APNS), Mr. Sarmad Ali (Secretary General APNS), Mr. Mujeeb-ur-Rahman Shami (Daily Pakistan), Mr. Nasir Chishti (Daily Jang), Mr. Bakhtzada Yousafzai (Daily Aeen, Peshawar), Mr. Shoaib Uddin (PFUJ Member (Workers) Mr. Muhammad Nawaz Raza (PFUJ Member (Dastoor), Mr. Shahzada Zulfiqar (Member Executive Council of PFUJ, Balochistan) & Mr. Waseem Abbas, Secretary to the Wage Board.

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