Raipur, Jun 3 (PTI) Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Bhupesh Baghel has urged Prime Minister Narendra Modi to issue a directive to the Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) to refund the money deposited towards the National Pension System (NPS) since November 2004 by the state government along with accruals, officials said on Friday.
Baghel made this demand to the prime minister days after the PFRDA rejected the state government’s request to withdraw Rs 17,240 crore accrued under the NPS.
In his letter written to Modi on Thursday, Baghel said his government has decided to reinstate the old pension scheme (OPS) in the interest of government officials and employees, and for its implementation the request is being made.
As per the data available with the state government, Rs 11,850 crore (employee and employer contribution) has been transferred by it to the National Securities Depository Limited (NSDL) during the period from November 1, 2004 to March 31, 2022. The current market value of this amount is about Rs 17,240 crore, he said.
The state government had requested the PFRDA on May 20 this year to return this amount to it. However, the authority, in a letter dated May 26 replied that there is no such provision available under which the funds, which are deposited both in the form of government contribution and employees’ contribution towards NPS, along with accruals can be refunded, he said.
“There is no such specific provision in the agreement made by the state government with NPS Trust and National Securities Deposit Limited (NSDL), which bars the state government from withdrawing from the new pension scheme and implementing the old pension scheme,” Baghel said. In the federal structure, it is the sovereign decision of the state government. It will be inappropriate to prevent implementation of a decision which was announced in the state budget and later approved in the cabinet aiming to secure the future of employees and their families, he added.
The officials and employees of the state government play an important role in the implementation of welfare schemes of the government and the OPS is being implemented for their welfare, the chief minister said, requesting the PM to direct the PFRDA to consider the state’s demand and return the amount.
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