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Punjab hikes pensioners’ DA to 100%, but with riders
Ruchika M Khanna
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 21
The cash-strapped Punjab Government today promised 10 per cent increase in the dearness allowance of pensioners, but it will only be paid after December.

The hike will take the DA on basic pension from current 90 per cent to 100 per cent. The pensioners will also have to wait for another three months to get their pending arrears due for seven months now (from July 2013 to January 2014). The government says it will deposit the arrears in pensioners’ bank accounts by August 15.

Following the Central Government pattern, Punjab was to give the hike in January this year, but the state government today said the decision about the payment of arrears to pensioners from January 2014 to November 2014 would be taken in due course.

The 3 lakh regular employees in Punjab will be given arrears of DA (due from July 2013 to January 2014) in August. This amount is likely to be credited in their General Provident Fund.

Punjab had announced 10 per cent DA hike for its employees in July 2013. However, the employees got it from February 2014. The DA for July 2013 to January 2014 was pending as the state government continued to show a slower than targeted growth in its revenues.

Sources in the Finance Department said there was a gap of Rs 600 crore in what the state earned and what it spent. Against an average revenue of Rs 1,000 crore a month, the expenditure was Rs 600 crore more than the revenue. The state government also decided to increase the commutation given to retiring employees from 20% to 30%.





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