S.No. 16 — Grant of House Rent Allowance to the employees who have vacated government quarters.
Department of Expenditure had through their 0. M. No. 10-2/2016-E.III(A) dated 12.04.2017 informed that as per the O.M. dated 27.11.1965 of the D/o Expenditure, HRA would be admissible to government employees eligible for government accommodation only if they had applied for it but did not get it. In places where surplus government accommodation is available, Ministry of Urban Development insists on the employees’ furnishing ‘No Accommodation Certificate’ at the place of posting. DoE further stated that they had not received the orders of the CAT, Chennai/ Madras High Court from the Ministry of Defence and hence DoE does not know whether the CAT order has been implemented or not. However, after the dismissal of the WP /SLP by the Calcutta High Court/Supreme Court, DoE had agreed to a proposal from MoD for implementing the CAT Calcutta’s order in an exactly similar matter. But the benefit was restricted to the applicants of the O.A. DoE further asserted that since the requirement of No Accommodation Certificate was in order, it did not require any review. MoD was advised to defend similar cases pending before courts.
Representative of Ministry of Urban Development informed that the HRA rules are administered by the Ministry of Finance and the Directorate of Estates (DoE) does not deal with every matter related to HRA. DoE is partly concerned with HRA Rule 4(a) (ii) to determine the entitlement of their employees for HRA where the admissibility of HRA to an employee is to be seen in the context of refusing govt. accommodation. DoE only notifies the cities in which the govt. residential accommodation is in surplus for the guidance of DDOs in various Central Government offices so that they could determine the entitlement of HRA of the individual officer under their control. Directorate of Estates (Region Section) vide O.M no. D-11016/36/2011-Regions, dated 26.04.2012 has permitted the utilization of surplus/ vacant houses of GPRA in absence of demand from eligible persons by ineligible Central Government offices to prevent revenue loss to the exchequer. Therefore, there is no scope of revenue loss to the exchequer even if houses have to be declared ‘surplus as certain employees vacate their Government accommodation after building their own after availing HBA.
In view of this, DoE accepted ‘in principle’ the comments of Staff-Side on this item regarding grant of House Rent Allowances to the employees who had vacated Government Quarters. However, since the instructions relating to quantum, entitlement and admissibility of house rent allowance (HRA) are issued by Ministry of Finance, the issues are being taken up with them before taking a final decision on the issue. JS(Personnel) stated that if a reference is sent to them, Department of Expenditure will look into the issue.