Mumbai: The central government employees may start getting revised and higher allowances as per the recommendations of the Seventh Pay Commission from July onwards, media reports said on Friday. This comes after a week-long period of intense suspense on the matter of higher allowances, as the Union Cabinet put off the discussion on the issue in their last meeting. Close to 50 Lakh government employees, who will be benefited from the move, are awaiting positive news on the issue of higher allowances.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had asked the Cabinet to pick up pace on the matter, given the risks of creating an unrest among the beneficiaries. The House Rent Allowance (HRA) of central government employees, is likely to see a superb hike of a minimum 157 per cent, in the lowest pay grade category. To address the concerns and issues of central government employees related to higher allowances, a special committee was setup under the leadership of Ashok Lavasa, and a final decision on the matter has been pending ever since.
The Cabinet had to take the decision in a meeting held on June 7, but ambiguous media reports had thrown doubts about whether the Cabinet discussed the matter at all. The reports had also said that a separate meeting will be held to discuss the matter and Union leaders had expressed confidence in the fact that a decision will be coming out soon. An Empowered Committee of Secretaries (E-CoS) has already reviewed the report and firmed up the proposal for the approval of the Cabinet.
According to media reports, the E-CoS has capped the HRA rates at 25-27 per cent. The 7th Pay Commission had recommended doing away with 53 of the total 196 allowances and subsuming 36 others, by including them in other bigger allowances. The Commission further recommended reducing the rates of HRA, depending on the category of city they live in, which has been divided into three divisions- X,Y and Z. For Metropolitan cities, 7th Pay Commission recommended bringing the HRA rate down from 30 to 24 per cent.