Agartala, March 15 (IANS): Ahead of the Budget Session of the Tripura Assembly, the State government today announced an additional 5 percent dearness allowance (DA) for its 209,000 employees and pension holders.
"Despite the State government's financial crunch, it has released additional 5 percent of DA for the employees and pensioners," State Finance Minister Tapan Chakraborty said after a Cabinet meeting chaired by Tripura Chief Minister Manik Sarkar.
To provide the DA, the additional annual spending from the government exchequer would be Rs 162.5 crore.
"Over 209,000 government employees and pensioners would get the new instalments of DA from this month," the minister said.
Employees of public sector undertakings and autonomous bodies will also benefit from it.
Government employees and pensioners had long been demanding from the State government that their DA be equal to that of Central government employees.
With this new instalment with effect from January, the DA of State government employees and pensioners rose to 79 percent, while Central government employees are getting the dearness allowance at 119 percent.
The Budget Session of the Tripura Assembly begins on March 18 and the State Budget for the coming financial year (2016-17) would be placed in the session.