University of Mumbai fails to pay PF arrears of staff for 7 yrs
The University of Mumbai (MU) has failed to deposit the provident fund (PF) deducted from salaries of its contractual employees between April 2009 and December 2016 in their accounts, despite a show-cause notice by Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) in July.
The notice was issued following complaints by some of the contractual employees of the Mumbai University Kamgar Sanghatna, an association of the university’s temporary employees. In a letter to the area enforcement officer (AEO) ST Shinde, Anirudh Chundawat, assistant PF commissioner (compliance) circle-I, said that the university has also failed to produce any records of grieving employees even after being issued a notice.
“AEO is directed to visit the establishment and verify the records. If the establishment fails to produce the records utilise your power...and submit a report,” read the letter.
The university employs around 1,200 non-teaching staff on contract-basis as the state government has created only eight permanent posts in the last 30 years. Out of 1,319 permanent posts, around 300 are lying vacant. While the regular employees are paid by the state, the university foots the bill for temporary employees.
A university official said that they are calculating the pending provident fund arrears, which is estimated to the tune of a few crore rupees. “It’s a small amount. Now that we know about it, we will pay it off,” he said.
Contractual employees have been at loggerheads with the university administration for past several years. They complain that despite working for the university for many years, some more than 10 years, their services are yet to be regularised.