Salary distribution before Onam; Govt expects market revival
Thiruvananthapuram: The government expects that distribution of salary and other benefits to the government employees before Onam will help revive the market which has been dull in the past few months due to the pandemic. This will also increase the tax revenue of the government. The state government decided to distribute salary to its employees before September 1 as First Onam and Thiruvonam falls on August 30 and 31.
Rs 2600 crore is required to provide salary and pension to the employees. Also Rs 1650 crore is necessary for distributing the welfare pension for two months and Rs 300 crore for giving bonus, festival allowance and other benefits. About Rs 4550 crore is expected to be spent in connection with Onam. Salary distribution will start from August 24 and distribution of pension for retired government employees will start from August 20.
Due to the considerable decrease in the income, the government will have to resort to market borrowing to meet the expenses. The 20 percent salary cut of government employees will end after August cut. The ordinance to cut the salary during five months from April to August was issued on the condition that the amount will be refunded when the government's economic condition improves.
As the COVID transmission increased and normal functioning of government offices did not resume, the refund will be delayed. Though the central government allowed Kerala to borrow more amount, it is not clear if this will be provided this year. Refunding the amount in cash can be difficult due to the ongoing financial crisis. So, they are planning to give it back in instalments or dissolve in Provident Fund. This will be finalised after Onam, the authorities said.