The Gujarat government on Thursday announced 10 per cent increase in dearness allowance (DA) for its employees. The increased DA, effective from July 1, 2010, will mean the state employees will get 45 per cent over and above their pay scales as against the current 35 per cent, an official release said.
The state government has claimed that with this increase, the pay package of the state employees will be at par with that of Central government employees. "While the increased amount of salary after the new DA will be paid in cash from October 1, the arrears for three months - July to September - will be deposited in the employees' provident fund," the release said.
The decision will, however, mean an additional burden of Rs 795.61 crore for the state government annually. Of this, Rs 589.26 crore will go in paying the increased DA to the state employees, while the rest will go to pensioners.
It is not known if the state government had sought permission of the State Election Commission before announcing the increased DA. The electoral code of conduct is effective in most parts of Gujarat, as polls for municipal corporations are scheduled on October 10, and panchayats and municipalities will go to polls on October 21.
It is also not known why the state government did not consider announcing the DA hike before the elections to municipal corporations, municipalities and panchayats were announced.