THE 2016-17 budget has held out many high hopes and aspirations for higher standard of life for the people of Bangladesh. But I am worried if I shall be able to maintain the same standard of life as I had in 2015-16 at the age of 85 years. I retired from a job in a sector corporation in 1989 and the total compensation I received in the non-pensionable job amounted to Taka eight hundred thousand in the form of gratuity, Provident fund, leave pay etc. I was getting Tk 5,700 per month as basic pay and that time against Tk 6,000 per month of the highest grade of government pay scale in force at that time. Today the same grade has risen to around Taka one hundred thousand per month or more and other benefits as admissible under the pay commission report of Dr. Farashuddin.
However I could build a two storied house at Eskaton area with my retirement benefits. I have rented out one floor for Tk 25,000 per month and I live with my family on the other floor. Besides, I invested some money in ICB units and was getting around Tk 60,000 a year as dividend though my house rent income in 1993 was Tk 5000 per month only. Thus my monthly average income was much more compared to my service in public sector while I could earn a handsome amount in dividends of public limited company shares. Unfortunately share markets have collapsed causing huge losses to many, but the concerned authorities are shy enough to take criminal actions against persons responsible for share market collapse. Hundreds of thousands of investors lost their investments and were pauperised overnight. Some of them were so frustrated that they committed suicide. We are tired of hearing the word zero tolerance for all criminal activities, but most of the criminals remain at large. These days newspaper columns are full of bank loan default notices issued by concerned agencies indicating the amount involved and detailed particulars of defaulters and banks concerned. I had the opportunity to visit a few shops in a meat selling area of Los Angeles, California and I could see some shops where notice of 'Halal meat' was on display.
Coming back to my point of discussion, I could increase my house rent income from Tk. 25,000 in 2015-16 to Tk 26,000 in 2016-17 which is negligible compared to recent pay hike of government service holders. I request the government to look into the matter and allow some form of subsidy for the employees who retired from their jobs in sector corporations and other jobs for non-pensionable cadres.
New Eskatan Road