Central government employees Current Affairs - 2020

COVID-19: Hike in Dearness Allowance for the year 2021 put on hold

The Government of India on April 23, 2020, put on hold to the hike in dearness allowance. This is being done by the union government to save Rs 1 lakh crore.

Highlights

The hold in the hike of dearness allowance applies only to central government employees and pensioners. Currently, the central government employees are receiving Dearness Allowance at 17% of their salary. The Government had planned to increase the allowance by 4%.

What is Dearness allowance?

Dearness Allowance is received by pensioners and government employees. The DA is revised twice every year in the month of July and January. The allowance is provided to the employees and pensioners to compensate inflation.

Around 8.5% of the Union Budget is used as salaries to the central government employees.

History

The concept of Dearness Allowance was introduced during World War II. In India the Dearness Allowance was introduced as Old Textile allowance in 1947. It was then reintroduced as Revised Textile Allowance in 1953. DA was first linked to wage revision of employees. It was later linked to the Consumer Price Index.

Central Government employees asked to declare assets under Lokpal Act, 2013

Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) has asked all Central government employees to declare their assets and liabilities under the provisions of Lokpal and Lokayuktas Act, 2013. In this regards DoPT has also made mandatory for them to disclose deposits in foreign banks.

Earlier in Dember 2014, DoPT had extended the date of declaring assets till April 2015 from 31 December 2014 as per the Public Servants (Furnishing of Information and Annual Return of Assets and Liabilities and the Limits for Exemption of Assets in Filing Returns) Amendment Rules, 2014.

This rules were issued in September 2014.

Some facts about rules

  • Central government employees must file the returns of their assets and liabilities, including of their spouse and dependent family members every year on March 31 on or before July 31 of that year.
  • These declarations will come under the Lokpal Act and in addition to various services rules.
  • In this regards all Group A, B, and C employees will declare the assets under the new rules. It should be noted that there are about 26,29, 913 employees in these three categories.
  • As per the rules, assets and liabilities includes details of cash in hand, bank deposits, investment in bonds, debentures, shares and units in companies or mutual funds, insurance policies, provident fund, personal loans and advance given to any person or entity, among others.
  • The employees also need to declare motor vehicles, aircraft, yachts or ships, gold and silver jewellery and bullion possessed by them, their spouses and dependent children.