the speculations that the cabinet would implement at least the merger of DA with basic pay, if not more, in this weekend after finance minister P Chidambaram reaches New Delhi from his visit to Australia. As the model code of conduct is likely to be implemented in the first week of March, it is quite logical to speculate that the UPA-II would dole out more to woo Central government employees.
For the sarkari employees, the merger of DA with basic pay means a lot as their allowances that are linked with basic pay will also increase proportionately. According to estimates, the merger will enable raising of salaries by up to 30 per cent.
The dearness allowance has been 90 percent of the basis pay since July 1, 2013, and it is widely believed that the DA will be hiked to 100 percent in the coming cabinet meeting. The hiking of DA is done after considering the retail inflation for industrial workers. But ahead of the polls, this would be just a small technicality for the government.
Earlier this month, the government constituted the 7th Central Pay Commission, the first step towards raising the salary of the Central government employees from January 1, 2016. The Commission will be headed by the retired Supreme Court judge Ashok Kumar Mathur. (Know more about 7th Pay Commission). The Cabinet has approved its terms of reference.
Further, the government has allocated Rs 500 crore to the Defence Pension Account in the current financial year itself for implementation of One Rank One Pension scheme for the defence forces of the country. Reportedly, it was the Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi who pushed this scheme in the interim budget so as to reap political dividends.