UP announces Rs 1,960 crore festival bonanza for govt employees

The state government is likely to incur an expenditure of Rs 1,000 crore on the festival package while a sum of Rs 960 crore will be spent on the special cash package.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath (Photo | PTI)
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath (Photo | PTI)

LUCKNOW: The Uttar Pradesh government has approved a festival bonanza worth Rs 1,960 crore for the state government employees in form of two schemes -- special festival package and advance payments and special cash package (in lieu of LTC).

The approvals were given at a meeting presided over by CM Yogi Adityanath on late Friday evening. Both schemes are based on the pattern of central government schemes in a bid to boost cash-flow into the market in the remaining months of the financial year 2020-2021.

Around 15 lakh government employees will be benefitted by the packages. The state government is likely to incur an expenditure of Rs 1,000 crore on the festival package while a sum of Rs 960 crore will be spent on the special cash package.

Under the special festival package scheme, an interest-free cash advance of Rs 10,000 would be provided to all state government employees. This scheme will remain in force until March 31, 2021. A pre-loaded SBI RuPay card will be given to the employees on request by the respective heads of departments.

Those, who would avail this facility, will have to repay the amount in not more than 10 installments. The festival advance will be given for all the festivals listed in the state government’s list of public/restricted holidays.

In case of any glitch in implementation, a final decision will be taken by the cabinet after the CM’s approval.

Under the scheme related to LTC, the employees would be able to avail special cash package instead of LTC. It sounds feasible as the majority of the staff has not been availing the LTC due to the Covid-19 pandemic. This will be applicable to employees who are eligible for LTC till March 31, 2021. A sum of Rs 6,000 per person has been approved as deemed return fare and will be given for a maximum of four persons in a family.

To avail this benefit, employees would have to present purchase vouchers with the GST number and tax charged.

The government further said that 50% of the claimed amount will be issued as an advance in the employee’s bank account and final payment will be made after the submission of vouchers. The claim has to be made within the financial year. However, if vouchers are not presented after the issue of the advance, the amount will be recovered with penal interest. The amount released under the special cash package will be taxable like LTC.
 

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