The Union Cabinet on Tuesday approved an additional 3 per cent hike in Dearness Allowance (DA) over the existing rate of 9 per cent, a move that will benefit about 1.1 crore Central government employees and pensioners. The decision will cost the exchequer over Rs. 9,000 crore. The hike will come into effect retrospectively from January 1, 2019, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley said.
Last year in August, the Cabinet gave nod for a 2 percentage point increase in Dearness Allowance (DA) for Central government employees.
Meanwhile, the Union Cabinet also gave its nod to re-promulgate the Triple Talaq ordinance, which makes the practice of instant triple talaq by Muslim men a penal offence. Once signed by President Ram Nath Kovind, the ordinance will come into force for the third time in less than one year.
Among the other ordinances approved by the Cabinet are the one on Indian Medical Council management body, company law amendment bill for compoundable penalties and unregulated deposits bill on Ponzi schemes.
The government also allowed the sale of 25 per cent of coal production from captive mines in the open market, a move aimed at increasing competitiveness and making the future auction of blocks attractive. Besides, the Cabinet also approved a new electronics policy, which aims to create a $400 billion electronic manufacturing ecosystem by 2025 and generate 1 crore jobs in the country.
“We are targeting $400 billion (ecosystem) by 2025. It will give jobs to 1 crore people,” Law and IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said after the Cabinet meeting. The National Electronics Policy 2019 proposes to boost mobile manufacturing in the country to 1 billion units worth Rs 13 lakh crore of which 600 million units worth Rs 7 lakh crore will be exported from the country.
Construction of a Rs 30,274 crore worth Regional Rapid Transport System (RRTS) to connect Delhi with Meerut through Ghaziabad also got the Cabinet nod. “The Cabinet has approved construction of Regional Rapid Transit System (RRTS) covering a distance of 82.15 kilometres,” Jaitley said.