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Kerala Government Instructed by KAT to Set Date for Clearing DA Arrears

The Kerala Administrative Tribunal (KAT) has unequivocally mandated the payment of dearness allowance (DA) arrears dating back to 2021 for government employees, dismissing any financial crisis or treasury constraints as justifications for non-payment. The interim order from KAT stems from a petition submitted by the Kerala NGO Association.

In response to the petition, a bench led by KAT chairman Justice C K Abdul Raheem emphasized that the government must submit an affidavit specifying the deadline for clearing the arrears. This directive requires compliance by December 11, as indicated in the interim order. Failure to provide this information would compel KAT to stipulate a deadline for the payment.

The petition, filed by NGO Association president Chavara Jayakumar, general secretary A M Jaffer Khan, and treasurer Thomas Herbit, highlighted the non-payment of six installments of DA since January 2021. The outstanding DA installments for January and July of 2021, 2022, and the current year were explicitly outlined. Despite appeals from employee organizations to the government for timely payment, the latter cited financial crisis as the cause for the delay.

The petitioners referred to a Supreme Court order emphasizing that salary and DA for employees cannot be denied based on financial constraints. In light of these circumstances, the NGO Association sought intervention from KAT, leading to the issuance of the interim order with a clear timeline for the government to address the DA arrears.


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