“Endless doubts regarding computation of Pension on Higher Wages as per the Judgement of the Hon’ble Supreme Court of 4th November, 2022.”
All the amendments carried out by EPFO were implemented only “prospectively” but not “retrospectively”. For example:
- Multiplication Factors which are applied to the Past
Service Benefit (Pension under EFPS,’71) as on 15-11-1995 were reduced from 10-06-2008. Thus those who attained 58 years on or after this date were effected.
- Two years Weightage for 20 years combined contributory period both under EFPS,’71 and EPS,’95 irrespective of whether the Employee took Voluntary retirement or not was awarded till 2008 which was restricted only to those who completed 20 years combined contributory service under EFPS,’71 & EPS,’95 along with attaining “58 years”. This stipulation was implemented only “prospectively” not “retrospectively”.
As a result from December, 2014 (the Pension of which is credited on 1st January, 2015) i.e., after 2008 when the amendment was brought, two years weightage was added along with arrears to Employees who took Voluntary retirement under Golden Shake Hand
scheme in Public Sector Undertakings, who took Voluntary Retirement before 2008.
- Recovery of 1.16% on Wages exceeding 15,000/- and computation of Pension on last 60 months average was also implemented prospectively w.e.f. 01-09-2014 but not ” retrospectively”.
These are only a few examples.
Then how can EPFO, when it has issued Circular on 1st June, 2023, regarding computation of Pension on Higher Wages, deviate from the Circular and implement revised computation may be based on 72, 84, 96 months as suspected by some employees.
Moreover the formula for computation of Pension is the same for those eligible for Pension upto Ceiling only (90%) and Higher Pension (10%). If there is change as suspected, it effects both the categories. Hon’ble Supreme Court already upheld the action of EPFO in deleting the clause for Option for Higher Pension w.e.f. 01-09-2014 and endorsed the view of the EPFO/Government that it wants to serve only the vulnerable section of employees i.e., those drawing wages upto 15,000/-. Then how can EPFO change the method of computation which effects the calculation of Pension in case of vulnerable class of employees?
As per the Judgement of Hon’ble Supreme Court of 31st March, 2016 and 12 th July, 2016, the Pension of 1,175 was revised and as per the Judgement of 4th October, 2016, the Pension of 24,672 employees was revised. All these employees including Sri Parveen Kohliji and Sri R.C. Gupta first paid the difference with interest and then received higher pension with arrears.
I.e, whatever they received as excess as P.F. settlement due to remitting contributions upto Ceiling during their service was only returned back to EPFO along with interest till the date of payment.
All the Pensioners who are receiving Pension upto Ceiling till now and who are the beneficiaries of the Judgement of 4th November, 2022, will get Higher Pension from the dates from which they are getting Pension upto Ceiling. Can there be different dates for Pension upto Ceiling and Pension on Higher Wages?
Whatever date mentioned in the PPO already with Pensioners, is the date from which Higher Pension is also payable?
Moreover, when EPS,’95 was implemented from 16-11-1995, it was mentioned in the Scheme itself that Pension under EPS,’95 commences from the day next to the date of attaining 58 years. Then why there are cycle of doubts in the minds of Pensioners who are beneficiaries of the judgement of 4th November, 2022. By expressing unceasing doubts, are the Pensioners goading EPFO to implementing the revised computation “restrospectively”? Any change in computation of Pension either upto Ceiling or on Higher Wages will have to be implemented prospectively i.e.., in the least in case of those who attaining 58 years from 2024 onwards. Those who attaining 58 years upto 2023, the computation as mentioned in the circular of 1st June, 2023 stands good.
Moreover as per the Judgement in The Pubjab State Cooperative Agricultural Development Bank Ltd…. (Appellant (s) versus The Registrar, Cooperative Societies and Others (Respondents) vide Civil Appeal(s) 297-298 of 2022, delivered by Hon’ble Justices Ajay Rastogi and Abhay S. Oka, observed that
- In our view, non-availability of financial resources would not be a defence available to the appellant Bank in taking away the vested rights accrued to the employees that too when it is for their socio-economic security. It is an assurance that in their old age, their periodical payments towards pension shall remain assured. The pension which is being paid to them is not a bounty and it is for the appellant to divert the resources from where the funds can be made available to fulfil the rights of the employees in protecting the vested rights accured in their favour.
All those who are beneficiaries of the Judgement of 4th November, 2022, has a vested right for computation of their Pension basing on last 60 months average and from the same date they are getting Pension upto Ceiling till now.
Section 7. Modification of Scheme, of EPF&MP Act, 1952, which confers any modifications either prospectively or retrospectively and also has a caution in the words
” however, that any such modification or annulment shall be without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under the notification.”
G. Srinivasa Rao, Mobile No: 89851 72459 and WhatsApp No: 6300114361.