Even as the Prime Minister (PM) has given green signal to the minimum pension of `1,000 as per the Employee Pension Scheme (EPS) which is effective from April 1, the pensioners in city continue to get less amount, while officials’ response has remained evasive for the past six months now.
According to the pensioners, the union cabinet has already announced changes in the EPS pension scheme and the new pension amount according to the new changes has been fixed as Rs 1,000. But surprisingly, while some of the pensioners managed to get `1,000 initially, but started getting lesser amount after a few months, there are many others, who have not received the entire amount even once.
One of the pensioners’, Krishan Baldev, claimed that he has not received the entire amount of `1,000 as his pension, ever since the PM has announced the scheme. There are other cases also in my vicinity in which residents have not been getting their entire pension every month. It is ironical that where cost of living is growing with the passage of every single day, government is not even ensuring a meagre sum of `1,000 for pensioners like me.”
“Launching schemes at national level is indeed a laudable act, but the government should make requisite provisions to ensure that benefits of such schemes actually reach the desired people, failing which the black sheep has to be identified and punitive action shall be ensured against the same,” Baldev said.
Another pensioner claimed that he had not received the full amount of his pension for the past four months.
It is pertinent to mention here that a minimum pension of Rs 1,000 was an effort to provide significant survival to pensioners who have rendered their services in the organised sector. The pension scheme was started to extend benefit to approximately 20 lakh pensioners under EPS, 1995.
When contacted, Ludhiana EPFO regional commissioner PPS Mangi said, “The possibilities of giving pension less than rs 1,000 to any pensioner are bleak, however, there might be a specific case where discrepancy could have occurred. Moreover, the respective pensioners may have applied for commutation of pension or return of capital option, which could have led to the situation.”