The Ministry of Railways, in its latest circular has informed its employees that no interest free advances, including the festival allowance would be granted.
The 7th Pay Commission report prepared by Justice (retd) AK Mathur had suggested the abolition of all interest free advances given to Central Government employees. The Finance Ministry had accepted the proposal, instructing the respective departments to implement it.
The interest free advances which stands abolished include – Festival Advance, Advance on Pay of Transfer, Warm Clothing Advance, Bicycle Advance, Natural Calamity Advance, Advance of Leave Salary and Advance of Lawsuits. However, the Finance Ministry made it clear that the following interest free advances would continue to remain provided: Advances for Medical Treatment, Travelling Allowance for Family of Deceased, Travelling Allowance on Tour or Transfer and Leave Travel Concession.
In the circular issued by Ministry of Railways, a clear directive has been issued regarding the abolition of Festival Advances. “It has been decided not to grant Festival Advance to Railway employees with immediate effect,” the Railway Board states.
The 7th Central Pay Commission report was accepted on June 29 by the Union Cabinet. However, only the salary component has been hiked so far. The anomalies related to allowances are yet to be resolved. The High-Level Committee formed by Centre has been provided with additional time to revise the allowances.
Employee unions, led by National Confederation of Central Government Employees and Workers have called a massive strike on February 15 to press for their demands.
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