The current Covid-19 pandemic has slowed the process of issuing Pension Payment Order (PPO) and completing other formalities for now-retiring government employees. The government has agreed to grant “provisional” pensions before their permanent pension is provided to ensure that the pensioners are not inconvenienced.
1) Union Minister of State for Personnel, Public Complaints and Pensions Dr Jitendra Singh said that the retirement department has a portal that can be accessed by any government employee approaching retirement to find out the status of their pension documents.
2) Due to the interruption of official work due to COVID pandemic and lockout, Dr. Singh said some of the employees who had retired during this time could not have been granted PPO. To prevent a pause in the implementation of standard pension protected by CCS (Pension Rules) 1972, the rules were modified to allow for smooth payment of “Provisional Pension” and “Provisional Gratuity” before the permanent PPO is released.
3) Initially, the payment of “Provisional Pension” may begin for a period of six months from the date of retirement, and in rare situations the duration of “Provisional Pension” can be extended further up to one year. Such guidelines shall also apply in situations where a government servant retires other than retirement, i.e. voluntary retirement, retirement in compliance with FR 56, etc.
4) The decision was taken in view of the fact that due to pandemic and lockdown constraints, a government official may find it difficult to submit his pension forms or may not be able to submit the claim form in hard copy along with the Service Book on time , particularly if both offices are located in different cities.
This is very pertinent to Central Armed Police Forces (CAPFs) who are constantly on the move and whose Heads of Offices are located in cities different from where the Pay & Accounts Office is located,” Dr Singh said.
5) In a circular, the Department of Pension & Pensioners’ Welfare (DOPPW) advised all offices holding GPF (General Provident Fund) accounts to conclude all credit entries including accruing employee interest two years prior to retirement and then one year prior to retirement, so that Provident Fund is always properly paid in due time.