Patna: The Bihar cabinet has approved a large sum of Rs 774 crore to pay overdue wages to about 30,000 ‘Shiksha Sevaks’ and ‘Talimi Markaz‘. The decision was made in a meeting led by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar, where the Education Department proposed taking Rs 774.24 crore from a specific fund, an official said. The decision has been taken for smooth implementation of the state government’s ‘Akshar Anchal Programme’ aimed at ensuring the welfare of the Mahadalit, minorities, and the extremely backward communities in the state, S Siddharth, Additional Chief Secretary (Cabinet Secretariat) told reporters after the meeting.

This decision supports the ‘Akshar Anchal Programme,’ aimed at ensuring the welfare of Mahadalit, minority, and extremely backward communities by helping children aged 6 to 14 access formal education. With this cabinet decision, about 30,000 ‘Shiksha Sevaks’ and ‘Talimi Markaz’ will finally receive their overdue payments. These educators also assist in implementing various government development and welfare schemes in rural areas, acting as an important link between the government and the families in these communities.

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Last year, the state cabinet doubled the monthly bonus of ‘Shiksha Sevaks’ and ‘Talimi Markaz’ from INR 11,000 to INR 22,000. Additionally, the cabinet approved an ‘unemployment allowance’ scheme under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act. This scheme provides an allowance for those who do not find work within fifteen days of applying. The allowance will be at least one-fourth of the minimum wage for the first 30 days and half of the minimum wage after that.

Moreover, the cabinet approved an increase in the house rent allowance (HRA) for state government employees living in cities. Employees in X-category cities like Delhi and Mumbai will now receive 30% of their basic salary as HRA. In Y-category cities like Patna, employees will get 20% (previously 16%), and in Z-category cities, they will receive 10% (previously 8%). In uncategorized cities, the HRA will increase from 6% to 7.5% of the basic salary.

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