Thursday, January 10, 2019

Foreign Training: How much an Indian officer gets as monthly allowance, warm clothing allowance et al; list of allowances post DoPT review

SENDING officers abroad under the Domestic Funding of Foreign Training (DFFT) programme is not an inexpensive affair, and the rate needs to be fixed from time to time according to the variation in purchasing power of a nation. For example, the Government of India pays an officer $1,803 (approx. Rs 1.27 lakh) per month as allowance if she pursues a course in Philippines whereas the same allowance goes up to $2,205 (approx. Rs 1.55 lakh) for studying in Switzerland. Here below is list of allowances including for warm clothing ($500 or Rs 35,200), departure ($500 or Rs 35,200), arrival ($375 or Rs 26,400) and…
for books ($1000 or Rs 75,500), according to a January 9 order of the DoPT which had recently reviewed the allowance amounts. 
First, it's the list of country-wise monthly living allowance that an Indian officer will be eligible for, while pursuing a long-term course. 
Country and Monthly Living allowance
1. USA: $1,918 (approx. Rs 1.35 lakh; 1 USD= Rs 70.5)
2. UK: $2,014 (approx. Rs 1.42 lakh)
3. France: $1,994 (approx. Rs 1.40 lakh)
4. Netherlands: $1,880 (approx. Rs 1.32 lakh)
5. Switzerland: $2,205 (approx. Rs 1.55 lakh)
6. Australia: $1,880 (approx. Rs 1.32 lakh)
7. Phillipines: $1,803 (approx. Rs 1.27 lakh)
8. Singapore:  $1,880 (approx. Rs 1.32 lakh)
That means, an Indian officer studying a long-term course in Switzerland, will be paid the maximum by the Indian government. It’s because the cost of living in Switzerland is the highest among all the nations cited above.
The above mentioned rates are based on the Foreign Allowance (FA) fixed by the Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in 2009, and are at 45% of FA of MEA being given to director level officers in those countries. 
Then here are one-time allowances:
1. Warm Clothing Allowance: $500 (approx. Rs 35,200)
2. Departure Allowance: $500 (approx. Rs 35,200)
3. Arrival Allowance: $375 (approx. Rs 26,400)
4. Books and Assignment Allowance: $1000 (approx. Rs 75,500)
It’s however clarified in the DoPT’s January 9 order that one-time allowances will be admissible to the officers deputed for one year long term programme only. The officers deputed for two years IACA programmes will be admissible for warm clothing allowance and books and assignment allowance only.
So far as the monthly accommodation allowance is concerned, the DoPT’s letter to chief secretaries and GoI secretaries mentions the following: 
(a) University accommodation should be taken. The same will be paid as per actual, subject to it being for a single bedroom accommodation. If the officer avails other than single bedroom university accommodation, the highest rate of the one bedroom university accommodation will be payable.
(b) In case the University accommodation is very limited and not available to all officers nominated for the programme, then University empanelled/recommended accommodation can be taken which will be treated at par with the University accommodation. In case the university recommended/em panelled accommodation are also limited and not available
to all officers, then private accommodation can be taken in which case, accommodation allowance shall be paid at par with the highest of the university's one bedroom accommodation or the actual rent paid by the officer, whichever is less on producing the supporting documents from accommodation authority viz. rent receipt, certificate from university regarding non-availability of the university accommodation etc.
(c) In case where the University accommodation/University recommended/em panel led accommodation are not available, the accommodation allowance may be given at the rate of US $750 per month and US $1000 per month in normal cities and big cities respectively.
In case of short-term programmes, per diem (DA) to be disbursed under the DFFT Scheme would be equal to per diem available to officers while “on tour” as per Gol’s guidelines.
Also, the accommodation allowance will be paid at par with the rates of per diem for training programmes upto the duration of 2 months. For programmes beyond 2 months’ duration, the  agreed for long term programmes, i.e., US $750 per month and US $1000 per month
in normal cities and big cities respectively, would be applicable.

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