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The Union Cabinet on Thursday approved an increase of 3 percentage points on the Dearness Allowance (DA) Dearness Relief (DR) for central government employees and pensioners from 28%. After this hike, the DA will increase to 31%. The hike comes into effect from 1 July, 2021, announced union minister Anurag Thakur in a press briefing in New Delhi.

The new hike comes just days ahead of Diwali and is aimed to benefit over 47 lakh employees and 68.62 lakh pensioners. The combined impact on the exchequer on account of both Dearness Allowance and Dearness Relief would be Rs.9,488.70 crore per annum, the government said in a statement. 

Earlier this year, the government had decided to hike the DA for central government employees by 11 percentage points from 17% to 28%. The increase reflects the additional instalments arising on 1 January, 2020, 1 July 2021 and 1 January 2021.

The DA and DR instalments are due for four periods namely January 1, 2020, July 1, 2020, January 1, 2021 and July 1, 2021.

The government had frozen all such hikes last year as coronavirus had dented its revenue. The DA hike for central government employees is likely to cost the government about 34,400 crore annually.

During the press briefing, Thakur also mentioned India's feat of achieving the milestone of administering 100 crore Covid-19 jabs till now. 

“I congratulate everyone for achieving 100 crore vaccination mark. We achieved it despite an atmosphere of apprehensions," he said.

The Cabinet also cleared the PM Gati Shakti - National Master Plan for multi-modal connectivity to economic zones. This comes a week after Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the 100 lakh crore national master plan for multi-modal connectivity.

 

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