AIDEF says LTC voucher scheme won't benefit employees
Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s announcement of tax-free Leave Travel Concession cash voucher scheme for the government employees has drawn flak from the All India Defence Employees Federation
Bengaluru: Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman's announcement of tax-free Leave Travel Concession cash voucher scheme for the government employees has drawn flak from the All India Defence Employees Federation (AIDEF).
In a statement, AIDEF said that, "the scheme was akin to the Rs 20-lakh crore Covid-19 relief package announced in May to encourage spending and corporatisation of ordnance factories. The latter announcement has defence employees on a nationwide strike."
"The Central government has already withheld three installments of dearness allowance (DA) through which it has saved nearly Rs 40,000 crore. More than 60% of the Central employees are under new pension scheme and there is no liability now for the government for their social security," the AIDEF stated.
The statement further said, "The 7th pay commission has abolished many recoverable advances available for the employees including festival advance. The demand of the central government employees to restore the festival advance equal to one month basic pay has not been considered so far.
In this situation the finance minister yesterday made an announcement that the employees will be paid Rs10,000 as a festival advance recoverable in 10 installments, but the same will not be paid in cash. It will be paid as a preloaded Rupay Card from SBI and it is available only up to March 31, 2021."
"Similarly in the name of LTC special cash package, one has to spend Rs.2,94,015 and get reimbursement of Rs.1,34,015 in lieu of LTC. Moreover one has to purchase items/availing services which carry minimum 12% GST and the purchase has to be made from registered vendor through digital mode and obtain the voucher indicating the GST No. and amount of GST paid.
TDS will be recovered from the LTC Earned Leave Encashment. Therefore it is amply clear that this amount will benefit the business houses boosting their sales and be recovered from the LTC earned leave encashment and the government will collect GST & IT from the Central Government Employees" the AIDEF lamented.
The statement pointed out that the government instead of releasing the DA installments and settling various 7th Central Pay Commission related issues, is making lofty announcements, which would never bring any relief to the employees, especially when they are in a very difficult position.