Plagued by the coronavirus pandemic over the last one and a half years adding to financial constraints, the state of Tamil Nadu has decided to continue with the retirement age of government employees at 60 years.
Sources in the Tamil Nadu government told IANS that an average of Rs 7,000 crore will have to be provided if the retirement age is reverted back to 58 and hence the government is keeping quiet for the time being given the precarious financial position of the state treasury.
The retirement age of government employees of Tamil Nadu was raised to 59 and then to 60 by the previous AIADMK government of K. Palaniswami.
The DMK government was for reverting the retirement age of government employees to 58 years but the mounting financial constraints are preventing that move.
It was in May 2020 that the AIADMK government under Palaniswami raised the retirement age of government employees from 58 to 59. In February 2021, the government again raised the retirement age from 59 to 60. The poor financial position of the state government was one reason to raise the retirement age as an average of Rs 7,000 crore could be saved if the retirement age was increased. Also, the AIADMK was expecting to reap rich electoral dividends from the strong community of government employees in the election year of 2021.
Tamil Nadu, according to sources in the state government, has an estimated 9 lakh government employees and around 3 per cent of these employees retire a year. This would make around 27,000 employees and the government would require a whopping Rs 7,000 crore to settle their benefits and to save this the present government does not want to revert the retirement age to 58 just now.