New Delhi, May 5: A week after Finance Secretary Ashok Lavasa who was heading the ‘Committee on Allowance’ submitted its final report to Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, now it is upto the Empowered Committee of Secretaries (E-CoS) to take a final call. Some reports suggest that the Empowered Committee of Secretaries may take 2-3 weeks to screen the allowance committee report on 7th Pay Commission recommendations. The E-CoS will then come up with a firm proposal which will be kept in front of the Union Cabinet for approval.
The National Joint Council of Action (NJCA), a joint body of union earlier this week met top government officials where he was told about the tentative time to be taken by the Empowered Committee of Secretaries on screening the allowance committee report on 7th Pay Commission recommendations. The Lavasa committee submitted its final report to Arun Jaitley on April 27.
According to a report, the allowance committee has suggested minor modifications in some allowances that are applicable universally to all employees as well as certain other allowances which is applicable to specific employee categories.
The allowance committee is currently examining the cost and expenditure of the arrears on allowances. Once the process is completed, the report will be placed before the Empowered Committee of Secretaries (E-CoS) which was set up to screen the 7th Pay Commission recommendations and then the proposal will be sent for approval of the Cabinet.
The employee union official said that the allowance report will be soon taken up by the Empowered Committee of Secretaries.
Earlier the 7th Pay Commission had recommended that the House Rent Allowance (HRA) be paid at the rate of 24 per cent, 16 per cent and 8 per cent of the new basic pay, depending on the type of city. The Commission had also recommended that the rate of the HRSA must be revised to 27 per cent, 18 per cent and 9 per cent when Dearness Allowance crosses 50 per cent, and further revised to 30 per cent, 20 per cent and 10 per cent when the Dearness Allowance crosses 100 per cent.
With regard to allowances, the NJCA and several other employee unions have demanded the HRA at the rate of 30 per cent, 20 per cent and 10 per cent.
Last year the 7th Pay Commission had recommended that out of a total of 196 allowances, 52 must be abolished and 36 other allowances must be abolished as separate identities by subsuming them in another allowance.
Meanwhile, the Union Cabinet on Wednesday approved the modification in recommendations of the 7th Pay Commission relating to the method of revision of pension of pre-2016 pensioners and family pensioners based on recommendations of a high-level panel. Some reports suggest that the decision might benefit over 55 lakh civil and defence pensioners and family pensioners who were employed before 2016.