Dearness Allowance for Central Government Employees

What is Dearness Allowance?

Dearness Allowance (DA) is a cost of living adjustment allowance paid to government employees and pensioners in India. It is calculated as a percentage of the basic salary to mitigate the impact of inflation on their purchasing power.

The DA is revised twice a year, in January and July, based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for Industrial Workers. The increase or decrease in DA is determined by the average rise or fall in the CPI over a specified period.

Importance of Dearness Allowance

Dearness Allowance plays a crucial role in the financial well-being of central government employees. It helps them cope with the rising cost of living and maintain their standard of living. DA is not only applicable to employees’ basic salary but also affects various allowances and benefits linked to it.

Calculation of Dearness Allowance

The calculation of Dearness Allowance is based on a formula prescribed by the government. The formula takes into account the average rise in the CPI over a specified period. The DA percentage is then calculated using the following formula:

DA Percentage = (Average CPI – Base Index) / Base Index x 100

Current Dearness Allowance Rates

As of July 2023, the Dearness Allowance rate for central government employees is 46%. This rate is applicable to employees in the pay matrix levels 1 to 17. The DA is calculated on the basic pay, including non-practicing allowance and NPA in the case of medical officers.

Impact of Dearness Allowance on Salary

Dearness Allowance has a direct impact on the salary of central government employees. With the revision in DA rates, employees’ salary and various allowances linked to it, such as House Rent Allowance (HRA) and Travel Allowance (TA), are also revised accordingly.


Dearness Allowance is a crucial component of the salary structure for central government employees. It helps them maintain their purchasing power and cope with the rising cost of living. The revision in DA rates twice a year ensures that employees’ salaries are adjusted to reflect the changing economic conditions.

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