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Coronavirus crisis: Pensioners to benefit as EPFO releases enhanced pension

Coronavirus crisis: Pensioners to benefit as EPFO releases enhanced pension

Earlier, there was no provision for restoration of commuted pension and the pensioners continued to receive reduced pension on account of commutation lifelong

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Govt releases Rs 105 crore arrear on account of restoration of "commuted value of pension"; this will help pensioners by putting more money in their hands

The Employees" Provident Fund Organisation today released Rs 868 crore pension, along with Rs 105 crore arrear on account of the restoration of "commuted value of pension", thereby fulfilling around 15-year long demand of workers. The decision to release arrear was taken after the recommendation of the Central Board of Trustees (EPFO). The current announcement will help pensioners by putting more money in their hands.

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Earlier, there was no provision for restoration of commuted pension and the pensioners continued to receive reduced pension on account of commutation lifelong. "This is a historical step for the benefit of pensioners under EPS (Employee Pension Scheme)-1995," a government statement said.

The EPFO has more than 65 lakh pensioners catered through its 135 regional offices. "The EPFO officers and staff battled all odds during this Covid-19 lockdown period and processed pension payment for May to ensure credit of pension in the bank account of pensioners," the statement added.

Three days after the first lockdown on March 28, the EPFO had also allowed formal sector workers to withdraw a non-refundable advance from their retirement savings to deal with the hardships due to the lockdown.

On May 16, while unveiling the fifth and final tranche of the Rs 20-lakh crore economic package, Sitharaman had said that 12 lakh members of the EPFO have withdrawn Rs 3,360 crore as non-refundable advance during the past two months.

The provision for a special withdrawal from the EPF Scheme to fight the COVID-19 pandemic is part of the PMGKY scheme announced by the government and an urgent notification on the matter was made to introduce a para 68 L (3) of the EPF Scheme on March 28, 2020.

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