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Centre notifies 7th pay panel recommendations on allowances

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New Delhi, July 7:  The government has notified the recommendations of the 7th Central Pay Commission on allowances with 34 modifications, with a total financial implication of Rs 30,748.23 crore per annum, the Finance Ministry said on Friday.

“Ministries concerned have now been advised to issue their orders on allowances governed by them immediately so that the revised allowances get reflected in the current month’s salary of government employees,” a ministry statement said here.

The move will benefit 48 lakh government employees. The notification was published in the Gazette of India on Thursday, and comes into effect from July 1.

Based on the Report of Committee on Allowances and the recommendation of the Empowered Committee of Secretaries, the Cabinet had approved modifications in 34 allowances at its meeting on June 28.

No raise was given in fully Dearness Allowance-indexed allowances such as Transport Allowance. Allowances not indexed to DA were raised by a factor of 2.25 and the partially indexed ones by a factor of 1.5. The quantum of allowances paid as a percentage of pay was rationalised by a factor of 0.8.

House Rent Allowance is currently paid at 30 per cent for X (population of 50 lakh and above), 20 per cent for Y (5 to 50 lakh) and 10 per cent for Z (below 5 lakh) category cities.

Under the revised notification, there is reduction in the existing rates to 24 per cent for X, 16 per cent for Y and 8 per cent for Z category cities.

As the HRA at the reduced rates may not be sufficient for employees falling in the lower pay bracket, it has been decided that HRA shall not be less than Rs 5,400, Rs 3,600 and Rs 1,800 for X, Y and Z category of cities respectively. This floor rate has been calculated at the rate of 30 per cent, 20 per cent and 10 per cent of the minimum pay of Rs 18,000.

“This will benefit more than 7.5 lakh employees,” it said.

Keeping in view the current inflation trends, the government has decided that these rates will be revised upwards when the DA crosses 25 per cent and 50 per cent respectively.

Other major allowances are:

*Rate of Siachen allowance for soldiers has increased from Rs 14,000 to Rs 30,000 and for officers from Rs 21,000 to Rs 42,500 per month for extreme risk and hardship.

*Flying allowance paid to uniformed services has been increased from Rs 10,500-Rs 15,750 per month to Rs 17,300-Rs 25,000 per month, which has also been extended to the Border Security Force Air Wing.

*The rate of nursing allowance has gone up from Rs 4,800 to Rs 7,200 per month.

*Fixed medical allowance for pensioners has been increased from Rs 500 to Rs 1,000 per month.

IANS

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India

Rahul yet to get special permission for Kailash Mansarovar Yatra

The sources said that he could not apply during the stipulated period for the application to visit Kailash Mansarovar, and had applied for special permission, which is normally granted to the MPs but had not received a response to his application so far.

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New Delhi, June 22 (IANS) Congress President Rahul Gandhi, who had expressed desire to go for Mansarovar Yatra after Karnataka elections, has not received a response to his request for special permission from the External Affairs Ministry, party sources said.

The sources said that he could not apply during the stipulated period for the application to visit Kailash Mansarovar, and had applied for special permission, which is normally granted to the MPs but had not received a response to his application so far.

According to a MEA press release dated February 21, the last date for registration was March 23.

However, Gandhi had announced his desire to undertake the pilgrimage on April 29 at the Jan Akrosh rally at the Ramlila Maidan here.

This year, the Yatra is scheduled from June 8 to September 8 through two routes, according to MEA.

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Truckers ‘postpone’ strike following request from centre

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Kolkata/New Delhi, June 22 (IANS) Truckers on Friday “temporarily postponed” their ongoing indefinite nationwide strike following a request from the Central government as Road Transport Minister Nitin Gadkari was out of station.

The strike, that began from June 18, had been called from June 18 against the high diesel prices, high toll rates and a sharp hike of third party insurance premium, and had entered the fifth day on Friday.

In a media release, All India Confederation of Goods Vehicle Owners’ Association — which had called the strike — said the decision was taken following a telephone call from the Centre, which asked the strikers to come for discussion after June 27.

“We have received telephone call from (the) Central ministry, that since the Minister is not in station till June 27, (they have requested us) to call off the strike and come for discussion after June 27,” said AICOGOA General Secretary Rajendra Singh and President B. Channa Reddy.

“In view of this and in public interest, we have (decided to) postpone the truckers’ strike,” they said.

The AICOGOA said the call for talks was received from Gadkari’s office.

“We received call from Union Minister Nitin Gadkari’s office and they have called us to talk… We have temporarily called off the strike because it was affecting truckers and people both,” another AICOGOA General Secretary Kausar Hussain told IANS.

Over 50 lakh vehicles remained off the road during the strike.

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Sahitya Akademi announces Bal and Yuva Puraskar for 2018

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Sahitya Akademi

New Delhi, June 22: India’s national academy of letters, the Sahitya Akademi, on Friday announced the names of 21 winners of its Bal Sahitya Puraskar and 21 recipients of the Yuva Puraskar for this year.

The Bal Puraskar awards will be conferred at a function on November 14, which is celebrated as Children’s Day, being the birth anniversary of India’s first Prime Minister, Jawaharlal Nehru. The date for conferring the Yuva Puraskar awards has not been declared yet.

“The awards were recommended by jury members representing 22 Indian languages, and approved by the Executive Board of the Sahitya Akademi which met today under the Chairmanship of Dr. Chandrashekhar Kambar, President, Sahitya Akademi,” a statement said.

“Ten books of poetry, seven of short stories, three novels and one play” have been chosen for the Yuva Puraskar award.

The award comprises a casket containing an engraved copper-plaque and a cheque of Rs 50,000 for both types of awards.

In the children’s category, awards have been declared for: Jugallochan Das (Assamese), Shirshendu Mukhopadhyay (Bengali), Sitaram Basumatary (Bodo), Easterine Kire (English), Chandrakant Sheth (Gujarati), Divik Ramesh (Hindi), Kanchyani Sharanappa Shivasangappa (Kannada), Zareef Ahmad Zareef (Kashmiri), Kumud Bhiku Naik (Konkani), Vaidya Nath Jha (Maithili), P.K. Gopi (Malayalam), Khangembam Shamungou (Manipuri).

Also named for the awards are: Ratnakar Matkari (Marathi), Bhim Pradhan (Nepali), Birendra Mohanty (Odia), Tarsem(Punjabi), C.L. Sankhla (Rajasthani), Sampadanand Mishra (Sanskrit), Laxminarayan Hansda (Santali), Kalpana Ashok Chellani (Sindhi), Kriungai Sethupathy (Tamil), Naramshetti Umamaheswar Rao (Telugu) and Rais Siddiqui (Urdu).

The award in the Dogri language category will be announced at a later date.

Poetry dominated the Yuva Puraskar awards this year. They have been declared for Samragnee Bandyopadhyay (Bengali), Esha Dadawala (Gujarati), Aasteek Vajpeyi (Hindi), Wilma Bantwal (Konkani), Umesh Paswan (Maithili), Tongbram Amarjit Singh (Manipuri), Jayadratha Suna (Odia), Dushyant Joshi (Rajasthani), Muni Rajsundar Vijay (Sanskrit) and Bala Sudhakar Mouli (Telugu).

The awardees in the short stories category include Bipasha Bora (Assamese), Padmanabha Bhat (Kannada), Dheeba Nazir (Kashmiri), Chhuden Kabimu (Nepali), Rani Murmu (Santali), Suneel Krishnan (Tamil), Shahnaz Rahman (Urdu).

The awards in the ‘novel’ category will be given to Amal (Malayalam), Navnath Gore (Marathi) and Gurpreet Sehji (Punjabi). Champa Chetnani has been cited for her Sindhi play.

No book was “found suitable” in the English language category. Awards for Bodo will be declared at a later date, while no award has been announced for Dogri.

Established in 1954 by the Indian government, Sahitya Akademi is India’s premier literary institution, promoting preserving literature in 24 languages.

IANS

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