Kohima drives to increase roll of unorganised workers’ pension
Dimapur, March 3 (EMN): There is ‘slow progress in enrolment’ in the pension scheme for unorganised sector workers, the Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-dhan (PM-SYM). Government establishments in Kohima district are directed to take steps to educate the target population to bring them into the scheme.
Eastern Mirror had previously reported the markedly low enrolment in the scheme for Nagaland. For instance, out of an estimated more than seven lakh workers in the agriculture and general unorganised sector in the state of Nagaland, only a total of 1, 035 people had, at the time of the published report, registered for the pension scheme.
A meeting of the Kohima District Level Implementation Committee for the unorganised workers scheme PM-SYM, and the National Pension Scheme for Traders and Self-employed Persons was conducted on March 3 in the Kohima deputy commissioner’s office.
The department of Information and Public Relations (IPR), the government’s publicity agency, gave on Tuesday updates about the meeting. The meeting was presided over by Deputy Commissioner Gregory Thejawelie, it was informed.
In the meeting, the deputy commissioner gave a brief highlight of the scheme being implemented by the Labour department as main department. He said that the scheme covers two sections: PMSYM which is a pension scheme for workers in the unorganised sector; and the NPS-Traders, which is a pension scheme for retail traders/shopkeepers and self-employed persons.
Thejawelie said Kohima district has to achieve a target of 3,300 enrolments by the end of March 2020. However, there is ‘slow progress in enrolment’ as reported by the department, the IPR stated. The official has requested area administrative officers along with all the line departments to take initiative in their respective areas and jurisdictions to educate the targeted group. They are to be educated about the requirement of documents and benefits of the scheme, and to facilitate them to enrol within these few weeks, the IPR stated.
The PM-SYM scheme is meant for old age protection and social security of unorganised sector workers whose monthly income is INR 15,000 or below and who are mostly engaged as street vendors, head loaders, cobblers, rag pickers, washer men and workers of mid-day meal, brick kiln, domestic, home-based, own account, agricultural, construction, ‘beedi’ (rolled smoke), handloom, leather, audio-visual or in similar other occupations, the IPR stated.
The NPS-Traders scheme, on the other hand, is meant for old age protection and social security of traders whose annual turnover is not more than INR 1.5 crore. These retail traders or shopkeepers and self-employed persons are mostly working as shop owners, retail traders, rice or oil mill owners, workshop owners, commission agents, brokers of real estate, owners of small hotels or restaurants etc.
The main features of the two schemes: They are voluntary and contributory pension schemes, under which the subscriber would receive a minimum assured pension of INR 3,000 per month after attaining the age of 60 years. If the subscriber dies, the spouse of the beneficiary will be entitled to receive 50% of the pension as family pension. Family pension is applicable only to spouses.
Under these schemes, the subscriber has to contribute monthly a fund amount depending on their entry age through ‘auto-debit’ facility from their account from the date of joining till the age of 60 years. The central government will also give equal matching contribution to the subscriber’s pension account.
The eligibility criteria of entry age for the PM-SYM and the NPS-Traders scheme is between 18 to 40 years. For enrolment, the unorganised sector workers and NPS-Traders have to visit the nearest common service centre (CSC) and get enrolled using their Aadhar cards and saving bank account/Jan-Dhan account number on a self-certification basis. The first subscription is to be paid in cash and the auto debit from the next month onwards.
The PM-SYM and NPS-Traders is a central sector scheme administered by the ministry of Labour and Employment and implemented through the Life Insurance Corporation of India and CSC e-Governance Service India Limited. LIC will be the pension fund manager and responsible for pension pay out.