Trade unions on Tuesday decided to boycott retirement fund body Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) trustees’ meet protesting the finance ministry’s decision to use unclaimed provident fund (PF) money for senior citizens’ welfare schemes.
“We have walked out of the Central Board of Trustees’ meeting today after they circulated a notification by finance ministry saying that a fund would be created from credit balance remaining in the unclaimed PF accounts for a period of over seven years from the date of declaration of those as inoperative accounts,” All India Trade Union Congress secretary, DL Sachdev said.
Another EPFO trustee and Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh member P J Banasure said the issue has been deliberated upon in the Finance, Audit and Investment Committee (FAIC) meeting of the EPFO. FAIC has already rejected the proposal to use unclaimed EPF money for creation of any senior citizen welfare fund.
FAIC had discussed the proposal after Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) wrote a letter in this regard to labour ministry and EPFO.
The EPFO trustees meet was called on Tuesday mainly to increase the proportion of body’s investment in exchange-traded fund in the current fiscal.
EPFO has started investing in stock markets last year in August. It had already invested about Rs 7,400 crore in exchange-traded fund.
Last year, the labour ministry had decided to invest 5% of EPFO’s investible deposit in exchange-traded funds. EPFO is estimated to receive Rs 1.3 lakh crore as investible deposit this fiscal.