Centre forms four panels to look into EPFO functioning
- The Union Government has formed four ad-hoc board-level committees.
- Committees to look into the functioning of different aspects of the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO), including IT, communications and pension.
- The EPFO is under the administrative control of the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Government of India.
- Union Labour and Employment Minister chairs the Central Board of Trustees of the EPFO that manages about Rs15 lakh crore of retirement savings, approved the formation of these panels.
- All the committees have been granted a tenure of three months.
- The Labour Secretary has been tasked with steering two of the committees — on ‘pension reforms’ and ‘IT and Communications’.
- As per its terms of reference, the eight-member panel on pension reforms had been told to submit a report advising ‘on matters relating to pension reforms for universalisation of social security’.
- The mandate of this particular panel is ‘unusual and unclear’ as a board-level committee already exists for reviewing and improving the Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS) of 1995.
- The ad-hoc committee on IT and Communications has 10 members, including three representatives each from employers and employee unions.
- The panel has been asked to suggest ‘IT measures to improve service delivery’ for EPFO members, build capacity of EPFO’s IT personnel and ‘effective media and communication with stakeholders’.
Employees’ Pension Scheme (EPS)
- The EPS is the pension scheme administered by the EPFO.
- A part of monthly EPF contributions deducted from employees’ salaries is diverted.
- The Pension and EDLI (Employees’ Deposit Linked Insurance) Implementation Committee is usually headed by the CPFC.
- It is one of the World's largest Social Security Organisations in terms of clientele and the volume of financial transactions undertaken.
- At present it maintains 19.34 crore accounts (Annual Report 2016-17) pertaining to its members.
- The Employees' Provident Fund came into existence with the promulgation of the Employees' Provident Funds Ordinance on the 15th November, 1951.
- It was replaced by the Employees' Provident Funds Act, 1952.
- It works under the control of the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Government of India.
Major schemes of EPFO
- The Employees' Provident Funds Scheme 1952 (EPF)
- The Employees' Pension Scheme 1995 (EPS)
- The Employees' Deposit Linked Insurance Scheme 1976 (EDLI)
The Employees' Provident Funds Scheme 1952 (EPF)
- Accumulation plus interest upon retirement, resignation , death.
- Partial withdrawals allowed for specific expenses such as house construction, higher education, marriage, illness etc.
The Employees' Pension Scheme 1995 (EPS)
- Monthly benefits for superannuation/ retirement, disability, survivor, widow (er), children.
- Amount of pension based on average salary during the preceding 12 months from the date of exit and total years of employment.
- Minimum pension on disablement.
- Past service benefit to participants of erstwhile Family Pension Scheme, 1971.
The Employees' Deposit Linked Insurance Scheme 1976 (EDLI)
- The benefit provided in case of death of an employee who was a member of the scheme at the time of the death.
- According to the revised scheme payment of benefit amount to be 20 times of the wages or based on the deposit in the Provident Fund, whichever is less.
- With the increase in the wages ceiling from 6500/- to 15000/- from 01.09.2014, the maximum benefit amount has become 3 lakh and an additional 20% of the benefit amount calculated is also paid.
EPFO UAN (Universal Account Number)
- UAN or Universal Account Number is a number allotted to all the salaried employees, who contribute a part of their income towards the Employee Provident Fund (EPF).
- Universal Account Number is a 12 digit number that each member of the Employee Provident Fund is allotted against his/her name.
- EPFO UAN is issued by the Government of India under the Ministry of Employment and Labor.
Benefits of Universal Account Number (UAN)
- Helps the EPFO in tracking the changes in the organizations for the employees.
- UAN facilities can also be accessed online.
- Makes withdrawals and transfers easy.
- Easy Management of EPF through UAN.
- SMS services and Online KYC update