ISLAMABAD - As the PML-N government is hinting ten per cent raise in salaries and pensions of the civil servants, all the opposition factions are set to force the government with different tactics to increase salaries and pensions by 20 per cent in upcoming budget 2015-16.

Despite knowing the numerical strength of treasury benches to easily pass fiscal budget 2015-16, the opposition factions will give tough time to government by holding protests, boycotts, cut motions and other tactics.

The opposition parties MQM and PTI have also prepared their shadow budgets to suggest the government to adopt their ideas, arguing it would help increase civil servants’ salaries by upto minimum 20 per cent.

“The government should come up with rational increase in salary packages, as rulers must keep price hike in mind,” said PPP’s senior lawmaker Sattar Bachani said this while talking to The Nation. “The opposition side will make all-out efforts to fight for the rights of civil servants and pensioners,” said PPP’s MNA, adding there should be over 20 per cent increase in government servants’ salaries as meagre amount will not bring any change in the lives of poor masses.

Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf (PTI) is also ready to lock horns over the issue of government servants’ salaries. “Pakistan Tehrik-e-Insaaf (PTI) will present its shadow budget till June 4...We will mention about sufficient increase in salaries and pensions as skyrocketing prices of essential items are not affordable to masses,” said PTI’s senior leader Ghulam Sarwar.

He said that PTI in its shadow budget would propose detailed budgetary allocations to facilitate incumbent government. “Proposals will be fruitful for masses if incorporated by the government side,” he added.

MQM, the third largest opposition party, has also proposed in its recently presented shadow budget that civil servants salaries should be increased by more than 20 per cent. “Government should take care of civil servants as meagre increase will not bring any change in the life of people,” said MQM’s senior leader Farooq Sattar.

Having almost same concerns, Jamaat Islami (JI) lawmaker Sher Akbar Khan said that they would push government to facilitate civil servants in salaries and pensions. “Salaries should be increased by over twenty per cent as prices of daily use items are increasing with each passing day,” he said.

Political analysts believed that the government side would propose meagre amount near to ten per cent to check the response of opposition and masses. “After observing the level of pressure from opposition side mainly civil servants they would increase more five to seven per cent,” they opined.

Sources aware of the budget-making process informed that the Ministry of Finance is contemplating various proposals for increasing the salaries of civil servants in the forthcoming budget. According to one of the recommendations, the government could increase the salaries by 10 per cent. Under the second proposal, the government could revise the pay scales of the employees by merging the ad hoc relief allowance into basic salaries and then give seven per cent increase on it. The government could likely to increase the house rent ceiling by 65 per cent. However, the federal cabinet would take final decision regarding increasing salaries few hours before unveiling the budget.