7th Pay Commission: Higher allowances from January
New Delhi: The central government employees to get their higher allowances under the 7th Pay Commission recommendations from January next, the top Finance Ministry sources told today.
When asked whether the arrears would be paid too, they said, “Higher allowances will be paid with retrospective effect from August 2016 but the central government employees unions demanded for implementation of the allowances with retrospective effect from January 2016.”
“The central government employees unions wanted that House Rent Allowance (HRA) be fixed at range 10, 20 and 30 per cent of the basic linked to the classification of the town of posting when the Pay commission recommended 24%, 16% and 8% respectively of new pay matrix, the union also asked to enhance children education allowance of Rs 3,000 and hostel subsidy of Rs 10,000 with tax exempt.” the sources said.
The union also demanded inclusion of post-graduate and professional courses in children education allowance and to hike the ‘Fixed Medical Allowance’ to Rs 2,000 with Dearness Allowance Indexation,” they added.
The unions put their demands before the Committee on Allowances headed by Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa, which met last Thursday.
The Union Cabinet cleared the recommendations of 7th Pay Commission in respect of the hike in basic pay and pension on June 29 but decision on its suggestions relating to allowances has been referred to the Committee on allowances as the pay commission had recommended abolition of 51 allowances and subsuming 37 others out of 196 allowances. So, there was resentment among employees over suggestions to scrap some allowances.
Fearing a jump in footfalls to deposit or withdraw cash following the demonetisation of Rs 500 and 1,000 banknotes, the Finance Ministry is likely to scale down the the higher allowances proposal.
“As people continue to suffer after demonetisation from November 9 on account of cash crunch, the Finance Minister Arun Jaitley compels to keep in abeyance the higher allowances till things normalize and it is likely to implement from January next,” Finance Ministry sources revealed.
Until acceptance of higher allowances, the allowances are now paid according to the 6th Pay Commission recommendations.