PF pensioners to hold dharna in Kerala

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Kozhikode, Nov 14 (UNI) Provident Fund Pensioners' Association in Kerala will stage mass dharnas in district headquarters on November 16 to press their demands which include release of pension arrears since 2000.

Talking to newsperson here Association President K Pavithran and General Secretry T P Unnikutty said the organisation was forced to go on agitation as the Centre ''failed'' to revise the scheme despite assurance given by Union Labour Minister Oscar Fernanades while addressing Association tenth state meet at Kasargod in March last.

Subsequent governments at the Centre and in States had ensured timely revision of pensionary benefits to their employees whereas PF pensioners, even after rendering services up to 58 years and above had to satisfy with meagre monthly pension ranging from Rs 500, they alleged.

Citing an instance, they said when the scheme was implemented 13 years ago after converting 8.33 per cent of the employer's contribution to the pension fund, the government had announced a minimum monthly pension of Rs 500.

Instead of allowing an increase while considering the rising inflation, the authorities had later slashed it to Rs 265 and again to a meagre Rs 18 a month, they alleged.

The Association leaders had produced a letter by Employees Provident Fund Organisation, Sub Regional Office, Kannur, sanctioning Rs 18 as monthly pension to a former employee in Kasaragod district.

The other demands were a minimum monthly pension of Rs 2,500 to senior PF pensioners and release of full pension after expiry of commutation period.

UNI PCH PMM 1825

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