Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Pension Red- Tape by Col VT Venkatesh (Retd)

Pension Red- Tape

I had invited two serving bank officials to RSI Bangalore as a token of my appreciation for the outstanding work they had done/ doing for ESM's 6 PCP implementation.
It was a very fruitful meeting & I came to know the startling news that RBI pays Rs45/ per transaction to the banks for pension credit i.e. a total of 9 crores (assuming the total ESM population as 20 lakhs) is paid by the RBI to banks every month & this alone amounts to 108 crores every year. Imagine having own IESM bank to take care of the transactions. Just imagine what we can do for ESM even if we get a fraction of this amount even Re 1/ per transaction.
Another sad fact that came to light again was about widows whose pension has not been revised since long. He quoted the name of one Mrs Thangammal (from Bangalore) wife of a sqn ldr who died in 1956 (the year I was born) & her pension has not been revised since 1956. She is 92 now & her dues amount to 24 lakhs. In spite of his best efforts he has not been able to get her the pension due to red tapism all over (including AF records office).

He will be providing her details to me next week & then I will request the IESM Pension cell to take up her case (if I am not able to solve it).
When we dig into a case we find all kinds of unexpected issues. This creates real agony for the widow (what I would call as a double whammy -death of loved one & reduced pension payment)
This only illustrates that we need to have a parallel org with CDA(P) on a PPP model to manage the pension issue. It should have a software development team & a data maintenance team along with a call center to address all issues of ESM pension on a pro active manner (& not a reactive manner). People may say that this the job of the CDA(P). Since we have to live with realities & we cannot change the work culture of a govt org we have no choice but to under take this mission. In the bargain we will obtain the ESM's data also which will facilitate unity of ESM (though we will be bound by some govt regulations also)
He also told me that 60 % arrears are expected on 22 Sep 2009 (to keep their names confidential I am not revealing the bank name).

Col VT Venkatesh (Retd)

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