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Minutes of the 31st SCOVA meeting – Discussion on Action Taken Report of 30th SCOVA meeting

Minutes of the 31st SCOVA meeting held on 05.09.2019 at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, New Delhi – Discussion on Action Taken Report of 30th SCOVA meeting

F.No. 42/03/2019-P&PW(D)
Government of India
Ministry of Personnel, P.G and Pensions
Department of Pension & Pensioners Welfare

******

3rd Floor, Lok Nayak Bhawan
Khan Market, New Delhi-110003

Date:- 25th October, 2019

To

All the Pensioners Associations included in the SCOVA vide Resolution dated 31.01.2018

Subject: Minutes of the 31st SCOVA meeting held under the chairmanship of Hon’ble MOS(PP) on 05.09.2019, at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, New Delhi-reg.

Please find enclosed herewith the minutes of the 31st Meeting of Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies (SCOVA) held under the chairmanship of Hon’ble MOS(PP) on 05.09.2019 at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, New Delhi for your kind perusal.

Encl: as above

(Charanjit Taneja)
Under Secretary to the Government of India

Minutes of the 31st Meeting of Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies (SCOVA) held on 05.09.2019 under the Chairmanship of Hon’ble MOS(PP) at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, New Delhi

The 31st meeting of Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies (SCOVA) was held under the chairmanship of Hon’ble MOS(PP) on 05.09.2019. List of participants is enclosed.

2. Joint Secretary (P) welcomed the representatives of Pensioners Associations and the participating officers from various Ministries/Departments.

3. The Action Taken Report on the decisions of the 30th SCOVA meeting and New Agenda Items of the 31st SCOVA meeting were taken up for discussion.

4. Discussion on the Action Taken Report of 30th SCOVA meeting

(i) Revision of PPOs of pre-2006 Air Force pensioners.

CGDA informed that corrigendum PPOs for revision of pension after 7th CPC are being issued to all pensioners and this would cover those pensioners in whose case revised pension authority was not issued after 6th CPC. CGDA was further requested to reconcile the number of Air Force Pensioners whose pension is to be revised after 6th CPC/7th CPC in consultation with Directorate of Air Veterans, Air HQ, New Delhi. Therefore, CGDA is required to interact with Directorate of Air Veterans to reconcile the number of Air Force Pensioners whose pension is yet to be revised in terms of provisions contained in 6th/7th CPC and also ensure that revised pension authority is issued in respect of all Defence pensioners including Air Force Pensioners.

A monthly status report in this regard will be sent by CGDA to Department of Pension & Pensioners’ Welfare.

(ii) Health Insurance Scheme for pensioners including those residing in Non-CGHS area.

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare informed that proposal/EFC memo for the Health Insurance Scheme had been submitted to Department of Expenditure. A revised EFC memo has been sent to Department of Expenditure in April,2019 and the same is pending for approval by the Department of Expenditure.

Joint Secretary (P&PW) mentioned that his issue has been pending for a long time and it needs to be resolved at the earliest. He requested Ministry of Health and Family Welfare to pursue this matter vigorously with Department of Expenditure.

(Action: Ministry of Health & Family Welfare and
Department of Expenditure)

(iii) Conversion of Postal Dispensary at Cantt. Road Cuttack to CGHS Wellness Centre.

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare informed that the orders dated 21.12.2018 have been issued for merger of all P&T dispensaries with CGHS which includes Postal Dispensary at Cantt. Road, Cuttack.

(iv) Anomaly in fixation of pension of DoT employees who were absorbed in BSNL between 01.10.2000 and 30.07.2001.

Department of Telecom informed that Hon’ble CAT has allowed a petition filed by the affected pensioners of BSNL for fixation of their pension based on their IDA Pay in BSNL. DoT has filed a writ petition i.e WP No. 10019/2017 against the order dated 16.12.2016 of Hon’be CAT and Hon’ble High Court has directed that no coercive steps shall be taken by the pensioners for implementing the order of Hon’ble CAT. The matter is sub-judice in the High Court.

Department of Telecom also informed that in regard to the alternate formulation suggested by DoPPW, views of Department of Public Enterprise (DPE) were sought as to whether any similar case of anomaly of pension has been reported by any Ministry. DPE have informed that there is no such precedent.

Department of Expenditure had earlier asked DoT for the financial implications on implementation of the said formulation suggested by DoPPW and DoT is working on that.

Department of Telecom was advised to calculate the financial implications in respect of both the formulation i.e the one which has been allowed by Hon’ble CAT in its order dated 16.12.2016 and the other suggested by DOPPW and submit the same to DoPPW/Department of Expenditure.

(Action:- Department of Telecom)

(v) Extension of benefit of upgraded Grade Pay to pre-2006 retirees of S-12 grade (Issue of grant of grade pay of Rs. 4600/- instead of Rs. 4200/-).

It was informed that DoPPW has since issued orders dated 04.01.2019 and 09.07.2019 for 6th and 7th CPC respectively for revision of pension based on grade pay of Rs. 4600/-. Therefore the matter stands resolved.

(vi) Merger of Survey of India Dispensary at Dehradun in CGHS on the same lines as P&T.

Representative of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare informed that the orders dated 22.10.2018 have been issued in this regard.

The item was closed.

(vii) Stoppage of recovery of wrongful/excess payments from Railways Pensioners.

It was informed by Ministry of Railways that the Ministry of Railways vide letter dated 04.05.2017 has issued instructions to provisionally stop recovery from pensioners till further advice. In the meantime, the complete details of over payments and recoveries is required to be complied before sending the case to Department of Expenditure to seek their approval for waiver of recoveries made due to payment of excess pension. It was further informed by Ministry of Railways that details from 6 Zonal Railways/PUs were still awaited.

One of the Pensioners’ Associations stated that though the instructions mentioned in Railway Board’s letter dated 04.05.2017 are being implemented, by and large, there are a few cases where the recovery of excess payment is still being made. Joint Secretary (P&PW) requested the Pensioners Association to provide details of the specific cases to the Ministry of Railways so that the same may be resolved by Railway Board.

(viii) Delay in commencement of family pension to spouse on death of pensioners.

CPAO informed that they have obtained data regarding time taken in commencement of family pension from all banks. As per the report prepared by CPAO, there has been significant improvement in this regard since the last SCOVA meeting.

Department of Financial Services (DFS) informed that difficulties are faced by banks in commencement of family pension on account of delay in receipt of death certificate of the deceased pensioner and completion of other paperwork formalities by family pensioner

Representatives from State Bank of India (SBI), Punjab National Bank (PNB) and Bank of Baroda (BoB) informed that in almost all cases, family pension is started within one month after receipt of the death certificate/ documents from the family pensioner.

In respect of family pensioners from Defence, CGDA informed that necessary guidelines have been issued vide PCDA(P), Allahabad Circular No. 203 dated 17.07.2018 whereby PDA have been advised to make sure that acknowledgement is invariably given by the PDAs to the family member on receipt of death certificate of the deceased pensioner /application for commencement of family pension and family pension is paid within one month.

Representatives of Pensioners Associations said that banks like United Commercial Bank, Indian Bank, Canara Bank are following the old procedures and are taking up to 3 month time or even longer, to start family pension. DFS was requested to issue suitable instructions to banks.

The item was closed. However, it was decided that CPAO/CGDA/DoPPW would continue to monitor the status of timely commencement of family pension by the Banks.

(ix) Timely (a) Restoration of commuted pension and (b) Commencement of Additional Pension on attaining the age of 80 years by the Banks.

It was informed by Department of Financial Services that most of the banks have automated system for restoration of commuted pension after 15 years and also for commencement of additional pension on attaining the age of 80 years. The banks where automated system is not presently available were requested to take action to make the system fully automated.

Representatives of Pensioners Associations and CGDA mentioned that in respect of family pensioners of Defence, as regards proof of age/date of birth and payment of additional pension, PCDAP) Allahabad issued Circulars whereby PDAs have been advised to follow the orders for payment of additional pension, but PDAs are not following circulars. PCDA will issue particular reiterating the instructions.

The data compiled by CPAO shows that there has been significant improvement in timely restoration of commuted pension and commencement of Additional Pension on attaining the age of 80 years, and the position in this respect is quite satisfactory.

(x) Item wise details of payment made to be shown in the pass books of pensioners.

It was informed that most of the banks have been providing the details/breakup of pension to the pensioners through SMS/Email etc. Further, personal and pension related information could be viewed from the dashboard facility provided by the CPAO.

SBI and PNB informed that they have also provided facilities on their web portals for viewing the pension details/breakup by the pensioners.

In view of the above, item was closed.

(xi) Upgradation of Polyclinic at Bajaj Nagar, Jaipur.

The representative of the association informed that that lift in the wellness centre has not been installed, due to which the old patients are facing a lot of difficulty. Ministry of Health & Family Welfare informed that funds have been released to CPWD for this purpose and delay is on the part of CPWD only. The basic issue raised by the Association related to upgradation and installation of new equipment in the polyclinic at Bajaj Nagar, Jaipur. It was observed that most of the issues have already been resolved. As regards the issue of relating to installation of lift, Ministry of Health and Family Welfare was advised to convene a meeting with the CPWD authorities and resolve this matter at the earliest. Ministry of Health and Family Welfare was also requested to monitor the progress in this regard at their own level till the satisfaction of the Pensioners/Association.

(xii) Setting up of CGHS Wellness Centre at Kochi.

Ministry of Health and Family Welfare informed that opening of new CGHS Wellness Centre at Kochi has been approved. A building for the same has also been identified and legal formalities are underway to take the building on rent. CGHS Wellness Centre shall start functioning once the possession of the building is taken and necessary renovations are done.

(xiii) Empanelment of Hospitals/ Health Centre with CGHS in Ambernath/Dombivli.

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare further informed that a few private hospitals near Ambarnath have been empanelled. In case any hospital agrees to the rates/terms and fulfills the conditions empanelment under CGHS comes forward, the same will be empanelled under CGHS.

(xiv) Revision of PPOs of pre-2016 pensioners/family pensioners as per 7th CPC orders.

CPAO informed that out of 9.03 lakh cases, 7.75 lakh cases have been revised.
CPAO also informed that they are monitoring the progress of the same on daily basis.

Ministry of Railways informed that out of 13.87 lakh cases, they have issued revised authorities in respect of 12.30 lakh cases.

Department of Telecom informed that out of 98,300 cases, 97,400 cases have been revised.

Department of Posts informed that out of 2.58 lakh cases, 2.30 lakh cases have been revised.

CGDA informed that out of 4.95 lakh cases of Defence Civilian pensioners/family pensioners, revised authority has been issued in respect of 4.53 lakh cases. CGDA further informed that in respect of pensioners from Defence Forces, out of 25 lakh cases, approximately 13 lakh cases have been revised so far.

The Departments were requested to complete the revision of pension and the remaining cases at the earliest.

(Action:-CPAO, Ministry of Railways, Department of Posts, Department of Telecom, Ministry of Defence/CGDA)

(xv) Payment of arrears accruing in respect of deceased pensioners/family pensioners to the nominee/legal heir.

CPAO informed that that on death of the pensioners/family pensioners, the pension account is closed by the bank and the balance amount in the account of

pensioners/family pensioners is paid to the nominees/legal heirs. However, it is observed that the life time arrears arising subsequently on account of Pay Commission etc. are not paid to the nominees/legal heirs of the deceased pensioners/family pensioners either on account of fact that the pension/family pension is not revised by the concerned Pension Sanctioning Authority (PSA) or the amount of arrears of revised pension/family pension is not paid due to closure of the bank account.

DoPPW informed that as per the instructions, revised pension payment authority has to be issued in respect of all pensioners/family pensioners who were alive as on 01.01.2016 and lifetime arrears has to be paid to the families of such pensioners/family pensioners who died after 01.01.2016. It was also informed that in accordance with the Para 23 of the Scheme booklet of CPAO, where the bank account of the deceased pensioner or family pensioner has been closed, the lifetime arrears are required to be paid by the pension disbursing bank through the bank pay order after making suitable note on both the halves of the PPO. It was decided that the DoPPW will reiterate the above instructions to all pension sanctioning authorities/pension disbursing authorities for compliance.

(xvi) Extension of benefit of modified parity/revision of pension by pay fixation method to pensioners drawing Compulsory retirement pension/Compassionate Allowance (on dismissal/removal).

It was informed that a fresh proposal has been referred to Department of Expenditure on 16.08.2019 for their consideration based on a decision taken in the recent JCM meeting.

This item has also been included in the New Agenda Items. Therefore, this item may be closed here.

(xvii) Revision of CGHS package rates suitable for attracting more private hospitals for empanelment.

Ministry of Health & Family Welfare informed that Empanelment of private hospitals under CGHS is a continuous process. Revision of rates is an administrative matter. Many Hospitals and Diagnostic Centres are applying for empanelment under CGHS at the current rates in all CGHS cities. As on date, a total of 681 private hospitals, 374 Eye Centres, 176 Dental Clinics and 229 Diagnostic Centre and Imaging are empanelled under CGHS.

In view of the above explanation of Ministry of Health and Family Welfare, the item was closed.

(xviii) Difference in Last Rank held and Rank for Pension in the case of pre-2006 military pensioners.

The representative of one of the Pensioners Associations informed that the benefit of One Rank One Pension has been given to the Military Pensioners based on their last rank only if they had worked for a minimum period of 10 months on that rank. If the period of service in the last rank was less than 10 month, the benefit of OROP has been given on the basis of the lower rank.

CGDA informed that as per the instructions issued by Ministry of Defence, the benefit of OROP is available with reference to last rank only if the pensioner had worked on that rank for a minimum period of 10 months. This being a policy issue, it is for the Ministry of Defence/Department of Ex-servicemen Welfare to take a decision on the issue raised by the Pensioners Association.

It was decided that Ministry of Defence/Department of Ex-servicemen Welfare will be requested for their views on this agenda item.

(Action:- Ministry of Defence/Department of Ex-servicemen Welfare)

(xix) Extension of benefit of Composite Hospitals to CAPF personnel.

Ministry of Home Affairs informed that as per the decision in the last SCOVA meeting, a detailed representation has not been submitted by the concerned Pensioners Association (All India Ex-Para Military Personnel Association, Jalandhar) to MHA. The Association was requested to submit the representation to MHA for taking a considered view in the matter.

(Action: Ministry of Home Affairs, All India Ex-Para Military Personnel Association, Jalandhar)

Click here to read more about Minutes of the 31st SCOVA meeting

Also check the following links related to this topic:

SCOVA Meeting on Pensioners issues – Minutes of 30th Meeting

Action Taken Report on the minutes of the 29th SCOVA meeting

29th SCOVA Meeting held on 12.01.2017 – Minutes of Meeting issued by Department of Pension

31st Meeting of SCOVA – Fresh Agenda items by RSCWS

31st meeting of SCOVA – Suggestion for fresh agenda items

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