New Delhi: Facing "adverse financial condition" due to non-operation of Metro services amid the coronavirus pandemic, the Delhi Metro authorities have decided to reduce perks and allowances of its employees by 50%, according to an internal order issued by it on Tuesday.
The Delhi Metro Rail Corporation (DMRC) has suffered loss of nearly Rs 1,300 crore since the closure of services on March 22 due to the COVID-19 situation, sources said.
According to an internal order issued to employees by the DMRC, the step has been taken "in view of the extreme adverse financial condition due to non-operation of metro services".
"It has been decided, that the perks and allowances shall be reduced by 50 per cent w.e.f. (with effect from) the month of August 2020, till futher orders," the order says. "Accordingly, starting with the salary for the month of August 2020, perks and allowances shall now be payable at 15.75 per cent of the basic pay."
Also, all sanctions of fresh advances, house building advance, multipurpose advance, laptop advance, festival advance and others are to be "kept on hold till further orders," it said.
"However, advances already sanctioned, shall, continue to be disbursed, as and when a demand is received," it said.
"Advances sought for medical treatment, TA (travel allowance) and DA (dearness allowance) and Composite Transfer Grant (CTG), will continue to be granted to facilitate the employees," the order said.
The order had been issued with the approval of competent authority, it added.
The DMRC has about 14,500 employees, sources said, adding that revenue from non-ticketing sources were also drying up due to closure of services.
The Centre had recently asked the DMRC to approach the Delhi government for financial assistance for repayment of the soft loan it had taken from the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA) for various projects.
The DMRC had received a total loan of Rs 35,198 crore from the JICA.
"We have received such a communication from the ministry recently. The same is being examined and processed," DMRC Executive Director Anuj Dayal had said on August 6.
He had responded to a query over reports that the Union Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs had directed all metros to write to their respective state governments for assistance regarding repayment of loans taken from external lending agencies.
The loan was given to Delhi Metro at a concessional rate of interest varying from 1.2-2.3% and was repayable in 30 years with a moratorium of 10 years.
Till now, DMRC has repaid Rs 3,337 crore to JICA and the balance liability was of Rs 31,861 crore.