Union Minister Prakash Javadekar on Friday announced a hike of 4 per cent in the Dearness Allowance (DA) raising it to 21 per cent from the existing 17 per cent for 48 lakh central government employees and 65 lakh pensioners.
The hike was announced during the cabinet meeting on Friday and will be effective from January 1, 2020, said Prakash Javadekar in a media briefing.
The hike, which is likely to benefit 1 crore 13 lakh families, will lay an additional burden of Rs 14, 595 crores on the exchequer, the Union Minister said.
“This is the second such step taken by this government to benefit central government employees. The 7th pay commission recommendations were implemented in 2016,” Prakash Javadekar said.
Dearness Allowance is linked to inflation and an increase in the prices of essential commodities.
In a huge relief to farmers of Tamil Nadu, the Union Minister also announced that the Centre has hiked the Maximum Selling Price (MSP) of copra by Rs. 439 for millers quality, thus raising its MSP from Rs. 9,521 to Rs. 9,560 per metric ton. As for the ball quality of copra, the price has been hiked by Rs. 380, raising its MSP from Rs. 9,920 to Rs. 10,300
"This helps in market stabilisation. Last year, Tamil Nadu farmers were in deep trouble as market price had crashed. The government began to purchase copra as per MSP, and immediately its price rose above the MSP. This is a protection to farmers," Prakash Javadekar said.
India is the number one producer of copra with more than 30 Lakh farmers producing 15 million metric tons of copra in 20 Lakh sectors in Tamil Nadu, the Union Minister said.
Speaking of the benefits to Urea factories in India, Javadekar said that the Government of India will give an additional amount of Rs. 350 on each metric ton of Urea to all 30 factories functional across the country.
Furthermore, for the units producing Urea for 30 years and more, the Government will provide Rs 150 on each ton in addition to 350 rupees, i.e. old units will get Rs 500 per metric tons, and others will get Rs 350.
India has 30 manufacturing units of Urea with an installed capacity of 21.6 million tonnes till 2013. There are 12 units of DAP producing plants with a combined capacity of 8.3 million tonnes. Complex fertilisers in the country have installed a capacity of 6.4 million tonnes from 19 units.