Home/ News / India/  Govt announces panel to improve national pension scheme

Union Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday proposed setting up of a committee to look into the issues related to pensions for government employees and evolve an approach to address the need of employees while maintaining fiscal prudence.

While moving the Finance Bill 2023 for consideration and passage in the Lok Sabha, Sitharaman said that the new approach to the NPS will be designed for adoption by central and state governments. 

Representations have been received that the national pension system for government employees needs to be improved, Sitharaman said.

"I propose to set up a committee under the finance secretary to look into this issue of pension and evolve an approach which addresses the need of employees while maintaining fiscal prudence to protect the common citizens. The approach will be designed for adoption by both central and state governments," the minister said.

The decision comes in the backdrop of several non-BJP states deciding to revert to the DA-linked Old Pension Scheme (OPS) and also employee organisations in some other states raising demand for the same.

The state governments of Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh have informed the Centre about their decision to revert to the Old Pension Scheme and have requested a refund of corpus accumulated under the NPS.

The central government earlier informed Parliament that it is not considering any proposal to restore the OPS in respect of the central government employees recruited after January 1, 2004.

Under the OPS, retired government employees received 50 per cent of their last drawn salary as monthly pensions. The amount keeps increasing with hike in the DA rates. OPS is not fiscally sustainable as it is not contributory in nature and the burden on exchequer keeps on mounting.

The total assets under management under the National Pension System and Atal Pension Yojana stood at 8.81 lakh crore as on March 4, 2023.

NPS has been implemented for all government employees except those in armed forces joining central government on or after 1st of January 2004. Most of the state/ Union Territory governments have also notified the NPS for their new employees.

According to the PFRDA (Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority), 26 state governments, with the exception of Tamil Nadu and West Bengal, have notified and implemented NPS for their employees.

NPS has been made available to every Indian citizen from May 1, 2009 on a voluntary basis.


(With PTI inputs)

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Updated: 24 Mar 2023, 02:22 PM IST
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