The Centre has extended the facility that allows its employees to visit Jammu and Kashmir, Ladakh, the Andaman and Nicobar Islands and the northeast while availing leave travel concession (LTC) by two more years till September 25, 2022, according to a personnel ministry statement issued on Thursday.
The eligible central government employees get reimbursement of tickets for to and fro journey, besides paid leave, when they avail LTC.
Minister of State for Personnel Jitendra Singh said an entitled government official can avail LTC for visiting Jammu and Kashmir, the northeast, Ladakh and the Andaman and Nicobar Islands in lieu of his hometown LTC.
In addition, the facility of air journey for the non-entitled government servants will be available for visiting the said places, he added.
"As a further convenience, ease of travel permission is also being granted to undertake journey to these areas by private airlines, whereas normally a government servant is expected to travel by the state-owned Air India," Singh said.
In relaxation to the Central Civil Services (LTC) Rules 1988, the scheme allowing government servants to travel by air to visit the Union territories of Jammu and Kashmir and Ladakh, the northeastern states and the Union Territory of Andaman and Nicobar Islands has been extended for a period of two years till September 25, 2022, the statement said.
Describing this as a huge and an exclusive facility for government employees, Singh said all eligible government servants may avail LTC to visit the said places against the conversion of their one hometown LTC in a four-year block, it said.
However, the government servants whose hometown and place of posting is the same, are not allowed this conversion, the statement said.
Such government servants, who are not otherwise entitled to travel by air, will also be allowed to travel by air — in economy class and by any airline — under the norms of this scheme. "Ever since the Modi government came to power in 2014, it has been the direction of Prime Minister Narendra Modi to give priority to the far-flung and difficult regions, and do whatever possible for ease of living and ease of governance in these areas," Singh said.