India staff get three month pay ultimatum
BBC India staff have been given three months to accept a new pay offer before funds are redirected elsewhere.
Staff in the Delhi bureau - who are employees of either Global News or Newsgathering - have already rejected the staggered rise which would see a 5% increase for the lowest paid, 3% for those on around £20,000 and no rise for those earning the equivalent of £31,000 or above.
They argue that the proposal fails to take into account the rising cost of living in India where there's been 'double digit inflation' since 2010.
'After four continuous years of financial pain, we were hoping that the raise would at least match the rate of inflation, if not exceed it,' they told management in a letter.'Give it to charity'
In an email to Ariel, with 79 signatories, they claim that senior managers have told them that the offer is not related to inflation but to what the BBC can afford. This, they argue, amounts to the use of 'different yardsticks' when dealing with overseas-based staff and those in the UK.
They add that they've been given three months to change their minds before the money is reallocated, and have been advised that if they don't want the rise they can 'give it to charity'.
A BBC spokesperson said that the pay for international staff had been calculated using the same method for several years.
'Inflation and market data from each country is analysed alongside News and Global News budgets in order to make a pay award which can apply for local staff based in that country,' explained the spokesperson. 'This process was followed in India as it was in all of the territories where we have international staff.'
The spokesperson added: 'In difficult financial circumstances, we have decided to weight the pay increases in this way to give lower-paid staff a higher actual pay increase than they would have received if an across-the-bureau percentage increase had been awarded.'