Amritsar, January 25
Past and existing government employees, under the Old Pension Retrieval Front Punjab (OPRF), burnt an effigy of the Modi government, to express their displeasure over the Centre’s reluctance to revive the Old Pension Scheme (OPS).
The district unit of the OPRF said Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman, Niti Aayog Vice-Chairman Suman Berry and Advisory Council member Sanjiv Sanyal, rejected the demand made by the states to return the NPS (New Pension Scheme) deposits of several lakh crores under the central agency, PFRDA.
“This pension scheme is a hindrance in the development and the economy. On one hand, all the MPs and MLAs of the Legislative Assemblies of the country are receiving pension under the old pension, on the other hand, the government employees are being forced to go with the NPS. This clearly shows the dual character of the administrators and policy makers,” said Front leader Kuldeep Tolanangal.
“The notification issued by the Punjab Government two months ago about bringing back the Old Pension Scheme, for the purpose of getting the votes of Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh, has proved to be hollow as the new pension scheme regulations have been applied to the new recruits as well,” he added.
Another member of the front, Gurpit Nabha, said that NPS employees will hold a state-level protest march to the residence of Union Minister of State Som Prakash in Phagwara on January 29, against the anti-pension policy of the Central Government.
“If Punjab does not issue a clear and time-bound legislation guaranteeing the complete withdrawal of the New Pension Scheme and the full benefits of the old pension based on the Pension Act 1972, then in the near future, a struggle against the Punjab Government will unfold,” he said.