bharatiya mazdoor sangh: BMS demands hike in pension; holds nationwide protest in front of EPFO offices

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The RSS-affiliated Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) is staging a nationwide protest today (i.e., January 20, 2022) outside the offices of the Employees’ Provident Fund Organization, demanding an increase in the minimum pension from Rs 1,000 to Rs 5,000 per month.

Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh tweeted from its official Twitter account: “BMS demands pension should be 50% of last drawn wages for all workers. Chalo pf office on 20th January 2022,”

BMS press release issued on Monday stated, “We have resolved to organize a nationwide dharna or a protest demonstration on January 20, 2022 in front of all EPFO offices and submit a memorandum addressed to the finance minister on long pending issues related to EPS-95 pensioners,”

According to BMS, the EPFO’s EPS-95 pension program is becoming a major issue in the organised sector, affecting over 65 lakh retirees.

“EPS pension is becoming a big issue in the organized sector involving nearly 65 lakh pensioners. During the Covid-19 days also those who have worked lifelong got only a paltry amount of minimum pension of ₹1,000, which is less than a destitute pension. Hence, the minimum pension under EPS, 1995, should be hiked to ₹5,000 per month from the existing ₹1,000 per month,” BMS said in a release.

“Any hike in minimum pension should benefit all 65 lakh pensioners as in the past when minimum pension was enhanced to Rs 1000; it benefitted only 14 lakh pensioners out of nearly 44 lakh eligible pensioners at that time.”

“Since in-principle acceptance was given by the ministry of labour, EPS-95 pensioners should be covered under Ayushman Bharat Medical Scheme as these old age pensioners with low pension are unable to get treatment at super specialty hospitals,” it added.

“Further, the government should formulate a universal pension scheme such that pension should be 50% of the last drawn salary,” it said.

These issues were highlighted earlier, according to the BMS, at the finance minister’s pre-budget consultation meeting with central trade unions on December 18, 2021 in New Delhi, in the presence of the Finance Minister, Nirmala Sitharaman.

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