New Delhi: The Union Cabinet on Wednesday decided not to abolish 12 of the 53 allowances which were recommended to be abolished by the 7th CPC. The decision to retain these allowances has been taken keeping in view the specific functional requirements of Railways, Posts and Scientific Departments such as Space and Atomic Energy.
This has been done on account of the unique nature of these allowances. The rates of these allowances have also been enhanced as per the formula adopted by the 7th CPC.
This will benefit over one lakh employees belonging to specific categories in Railways, Posts, Defence and Scientific Departments.
Here are some of the highlights of the Union cabinet decision on these allowances:
■ Recognizing the extreme nature of risk and hardship faced by officers / PBORs on continuous basis in Siachen, the government has decided to further enhance the rates of Siachen Allowance which will now go up from the existing rate from Rs14,000 to Rs30,000 per month for Jawans & JCOs (Level 8 and below) and from Rs21,000 to Rs42,500 per month for Officers (Level 9 and above).
■ Various types of allowances paid for provisioning and maintenance of uniforms/outfits have been rationalised and subsumed in newly proposed Dress Allowance to be paid annually in four slabs at Rs5,000, Rs10,000, Rs15,000 and Rs20,000 per annum for various category of employees. Nurses will be paid on a monthly basis, while SPG personnel will be paid at a higher rate. The rates for specific clothing for different categories of employees will be governed separately.
■ The rate of Children Education Allowance (CEA) has been increased from Rs1,500 per month/child (max. 2) to Rs2,250 per month/child (max.2). Hostel Subsidy will also go up from Rs4,500 per month to Rs6,750 per month.
■ Existing rates of Special Allowance for Child Care for Women with Disabilities has been doubled from Rs1,500 per month to Rs3,000 per month.
■ Higher Qualification Incentive for Civilians has been increased from Rs2,000 - Rs10,000 (Grant) to Rs10,000 - Rs30,000 (Grant).
■ Ration Money Allowance will continue to be paid to Defence officers posted in peace areas and directly credited to their account. It will benefit 43000 Defence officers.
■ Rates of Additional Allowance have been increased from Rs500 / 1,000 per month to Rs1,125 / 2,250 per month. This has also been extended to Loco Pilot Goods and Senior Passenger Guards also at Rs750 per month. In view of strenuous nature of the job, new Allowance namely Special Train Controller’s Allowance at Rs5,000 per month for Train Controllers of Railways has been introduced.
■ Existing rate of Nursing Allowance has been increased from Rs4,800 per month to Rs7,200 per month.
■ The rate of Fixed Medical Allowance (FMA) for Pensioners has been increased from Rs500 per month to Rs1,000 per month. This will benefit more than 5 lakh central government pensioners not availing CGHS facilities.
■ The rate of Constant Attendance Allowance granted on 100% disablement has been increased from Rs4,500 per month to Rs6,750 per month.
■ The recommendations of 7th CPC to abolish Launch Campaign Allowance and Space Technology Allowance has not been accepted. In order to incentivise the supporting employees in Space and Atomic Energy sector, the rate of Launch Campaign and Space Technology Allowance has been increased from Rs7,500 per annum to Rs11,250 per annum.
■ Professional Update Allowance for non-gazetted employees of Department of Atomic Energy will also continue to be paid at the enhanced rate of Rs11,250 per annum.
■ The 7th CPC had placed Antarctica Allowance, paid to the Scientists and other members undertaking the expedition to Antarctica under the Indian Antarctic Programme, in the RH-Max Cell of the R&H Matrix. The rates of the RH-Max Cell recommended by the 7th CPC were less than the existing rates of Antarctica Allowance which is currently paid on per day basis.
Considering the specific nature of these expeditions and to provide an appropriate increase in rates, government has decided to keep Antarctica Allowance out of the R&H Matrix and the allowance will continue to be paid on per day basis as per existing practice.
The Rates of Antarctica Allowance will go up from Rs1,125 per day (Summers) and Rs1,688 per day (Winters) to Rs1,500 per day (Summers) and Rs2,000 per day (Winters).
■ The recommendations of 7th CPC to abolish Cycle Allowance, granted mainly to Postmen and trackmen in Railways, has not been accepted.
Keeping in view the specific requirement of this allowance for postmen in Department of Posts and trackmen in Railways, the cycle allowance is retained and the rates have been doubled from Rs90 per month to Rs180 per month. This will benefit more than 22,200 employees.