Center orders ministries to ensure immediate start of family pensions
The Center has called on all ministries to ensure that family pension begins within one month of receiving applications from the families of deceased officials. In addition, the Department of Pensions and Welfare of Retirees also issued two detailed notes – one for employees of the old pension scheme and the other for those of the National Pension System (NPS) to pay all the rights of the family on the death of civil servants.
“In addition, employee contributions and related income in the NPS pension corpus will also be paid to the family member,” he said.
In addition, the head of the office will start the family pension approval process and simultaneously close the Permanent Retirement Account Number (PRAN) under the NPS. The government contribution and the related returns would be transferred to the government account, the ordinance added.
“The remaining amount would be paid in a lump sum to the candidate or legal heir in accordance with PFRDA regulations,” he said.
Meanwhile, Manjeet Singh Patel, chairman of the Delhi unit of the National Movement for the Old Pensions Scheme (NMOPS), which fought for the end of the new pension system to ensure that all employees benefit of the old pension plan, also informed that the new order will bring relief to the affected families.
“We are very happy that the government has decided to pay an employee’s contribution and its return to their NPS pension corpus in addition to the family pension.
“We also ask the Center to ensure that employees have the exclusive right to all of their contribution and feedback (except government contribution) in the NPS corpus as well so that they can withdraw as and when they wish, ”Patel said.
The non-profit organization NMOPS has more than 13 lakh of central and state government employees among its members. The Department of Pensions and Retiree Welfare order noted that several government employees have lost their lives due to the recent wave of COVID-19.
“In many cases, deceased employees were the sole breadwinners for their families and the victims left families devastated and in dire need of funds to live on.
“It is therefore incumbent on the government to ensure that family pensions and other rights relating to deceased employees are paid promptly to their families,” he said in the order issued Thursday.
The services were therefore asked to strictly comply with the rules and to ensure that the payment of the provisional family pension is started by the head of office upon receipt of the request (with death certificate) from the eligible family member. . In addition, the ministry was also urged to ensure that payment of an interim death benefit is made to applicants / family members immediately after forwarding the case to the payroll and accounts office. In addition, priority measures can be taken for the payment of ordinary family pension through the bank and for the payment of other family rights in the event of the civil servant’s death, the department added.
“It can be guaranteed that the PPO for the family pension is issued and that the payment of the ordinary family pension is started by the bank no later than one month after the receipt of the application for the family pension,” he said. .
The ministries were also asked to submit a monthly report including details such as the name and designation of the official who died since January 1, 2020, the date on which the provisional family pension and the provisional gratuity were sanctioned, the date on which the PPO was issued, the date on which other duties were paid and the reasons for the delays, if any, and the corrective actions taken to avoid delays in the future, the order said.
With PTI inputs