Relaxing norms, the Centre allowed on Friday its lakhs of employees to take advance money four months ahead of commencing journey under Leave Travel Concession (LTC) rules.
A government employee gets reimbursement of tickets for to and fro journey, in addition to leaves, when he avails LTC.
The existing rules allow an employee to draw advance for LTC journey for himself and his family members 65 days before the proposed date of the outward journey.
Since, the ministry of railways has decided to increase the advance reservation period for booking accommodation in trains from 60 to 120 days (excluding the date of journey) with effect from April 1 2015, the time-limit for drawable of LTC advance by the government servants may be increased from 65 days (i.e. two months and 5 days) to 125 days (i.e. four months and five days) in case of journey by train, an order issued by department of personnel and training (DoPT) said.
The cases where the LTC journey is proposed to be undertaken by other modes of transport viz air, sea or road, the time-limit for drawing LTC advance shall remain 65 days only, it said.
In all the cases, where an advance is drawn for the purpose of availing LTC, it will be mandatory for the government servant to produce the outward journey tickets to the competent authority within ten days of drawable of advance in order to verify that he has actually utilised the amount to purchase the tickets, the order said.
There are about 50 lakh central government employees at present.
In another order, employees have been asked to compulsorily avail catering facilities provided by the railways on Rajdhani and Shatabdi trains and the cost is included in the ticket.
The move comes after several references were received seeking clarification regarding the admissibility of catering charges charged by the Railways in respect of the rail journey performed by Rajdhani or Shatabdi on LTC.
The matter has been examined in consultation with department of expenditure, ministry of finance and it is clarified that if the government servant has to compulsorily avail the catering facility and the cost is included in the rail fare for Rajdhani, Shatabdi or Duronto trains, the fare charged shall be reimbursable in full as per the entitlement or eligibility of the government servant, the order added.