New Delhi: The Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) on Friday failed to reach a decision on the rate of interest to be offered to its 61 million subscribers in the current financial year and asked the finance ministry to take a call.
After a meeting of the EPFO’s central board of trustees (CBT), Union labour and employment minister Mallikarjun Kharge said the matter had been referred to the finance ministry because of divergent views among stakeholders.
“We will discuss with the finance ministry and a decision will be taken as early as possible,” Kharge said.
The financial advisory committee of the EPFO has recommended payment of 8.25% interest for the year to 31 March, against 9.5% last year. Employers suggested paying 8.5% interest while labour unions wanted 9.5% in the current fiscal as well.
Dipankar Mukherjee, secretary of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), said the government should provide additional funds, if necessary, to maintain the interest rate at 9.5%. “This is a social security scheme. The government is ready to bail out private sector companies. It should provide the additional fund for the scheme, if required,” he said.
PTI, quoting unnamed people, said it’s the first time the CBT had failed to take a decision on the interest rate to be paid on provident fund contributions and left the matter to the finance ministry.