As inflation in the country is prevailing at high levels, government employees are likely to get a hike in dearness allowance (DA), to be announced at the end of this month. According to media reports, given the All-India Consumer Price Index (AICPI) hovering over 127 points, DA hike is likely to be around five per cent. The DA is revised twice a year — January and July.
In January, the DA for the central government employees under the 7th Pay Commission was revised upwards to 34 per cent, from the earlier rate of 31 per cent. It is revised based on the AICPI. The retail inflation, based on CPI, in April stood at an eight-year high of 7.79 per cent.
Before this, the Centre had in July 2021 hiked DA and dearness relief (DR) for the central government employees and pensioners, respectively, to 28 per cent from 17 per cent after a long pause. Dearness allowance (DA) is given to government employees, while dearness relief (DR) is for pensioners.
In October 2021, the central government employees again got a jump of 3 per cent in dearness allowance. Then, the DA for the central government employees rose to 31 per cent, effective from July 2021. Now, from January 2022, DA and DR will be paid to the salaried at a rate of 34 per cent, increasing from the earlier rate of 31 per cent.
All-India Consumer Price Index
The AICPI in January stood it 125.1 points, which inched down to 125 in February. However, in March, the Index saw a jump of one point to 126 points. The AICPI in April jumped to 127.7 points. Data for May and June will now be closely watched for. If the figures in those months remain above 127, the DA may be hiked by five per cent, according to media reports.
DR Hike For CPF Beneficiaries
Last month, dearness relief for certain categories of government employees was increased from 368 per cent to 381 per cent of the basic ex-gratia. This is for surviving CPF beneficiaries who retired from service between November 18, 1960, and December 31, 1985, according to an office memorandum by the Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.
“The surviving CPF beneficiaries who have retired from service between the period 18.11.1960 and 31.12.1985, and are entitled to basic ex-gratia @ Rs 3,000, Rs 1,000, Rs 750 & Rs 650 for Group A, B, C & D, respectively, w.e.f June 4, 2013, vide OM No. 1/10/201 2-P&PW(E) dtd. June 27, 2013, shall now be entitled to enhanced dearness relief from 368 per cent of the basic ex-gratia to 381 per cent of the basic ex-gratia w.e.f 01.01.2022,” according to the office memorandum dated May 11.
The central government had held back three instalments of dearness allowance and dearness relief for January 1, 2020; July 1, 2020; and January 1, 2021, in view of the unprecedented situation which arose due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As per reports few days ago, the central government made it clear that general dearness allowance arrears withheld from January 2020 to June 2021 will not be released as of now.
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