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Workers above 40 can’t join new pension scheme

February 09, 2019 04:39 AM

courtesy  HT FEB 9

Rajeev Jayaswal
Workers above 40 can’t join new pension scheme

NEW DELHI: One of the government’s mega budget announcements, a ₹3,000 per month pension for unorganised sector workers once they turn 60, excludes those above the age of 40, doesn’t allow for children of subscribers to be made nominees, and has stringent exit norms, according to details contained in the notification of the scheme issued on Thursday.

Unorganised sector workers can enter the scheme as early as the age of 18 by contributing ₹55 per month. The latest they can subscribe to the scheme is at the age of 40 by paying ₹200 monthly, the notification by the ministry of labour and employment said. The central government has committed to contribute an equal amount.

According to the notification, labourers above the age of 40 years cannot join the scheme. The scheme, the ‘Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maan-dhan, 2019’ for was announced in the interim budget on February 1, and targeted a major constituency of about 400 million unorganised workers in both urban and rural India.

The labour ministry said after finance minister Piyush Goyal’s budget speech that the scheme would benefit 100 million workers in the informal sector, including domestic helps like maids, cooks and housekeepers in addition to those who work in small, informal business establishments who earn up to ₹15,000 per month. “Half of India’s GDP comes from the sweat and toil of 42 crore [420 million] workers in the unorganised sector working as street vendors, rickshaw pullers, construction workers, rag pickers, agricultural workers, beedi workers, handloom, leather and in numerous other similar occupations,” Goyal said.

“Domestic workers are also engaged in big numbers. We must provide them comprehensive social security coverage for their old age,” he added.

According to the notification, an Aadhaar-linked savings bank account is one of the pre-requisites for joining the scheme; a monthly salary ceiling of ₹15,000 is another

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