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May 3, 2010


   The Centre of Indian Trade Unions denounces the unilateral action by the Govt
of India in amending the Employees Pension Scheme to drastically reduce the
pension benefits of the early retirees (retired or separated before 58 years )
vide Labour Ministry notification no GSR 546(E) dated 23rd July 2009.

    In the face of millions of workers losing livelihood owing to recession since
last six months, this move of the Govt would further squeeze the workers
rendered jobless before the retirement age for no fault of theirs, of their
legitimate pension benefit.

    While issuing this amendment notification, the Govt ignored the statutory
Tripartite Forum—the Central Board of Trustees of Employees Provident Fund
Organisation, responsible for administering the Employees Pension Scheme,
thereby making a mockery of principle of tripartism.

    This is the second unilateral move for curtailing the pension benefit of the
workers within a span of one year. The first move by the same UPA regime had
been in September 2008 in the same manner ignoring the statutory tripartite
forum, which rewarded the defaulting employers on the one hand by drastically
reducing the penalty for default and simultaneously curtailing the pension
benefit of the workers by way of withdrawal of commutation facility and
withdrawal of the option for availing combination of reduced pension and return
of capital besides reducing the pension amount for the early-pensioners.

    The second one is through the recent executive order which would deprive the
worker who has rendered 20 years service but has to retire or lose his job
prematurely from the provision of weightage benefit in pensionable service on
which pension is calculated. The millions of workers losing job prematurely
owing to recession, who deserve urgent support and relief from the Govt, would
be cruelly squeezed further while the employers continue to enjoy stimulus
package funded by public exchequer. And through this action, the patently
anti-worker anti-people character of the Govt stands thoroughly exposed.

    CITU condemns such anti worker action by the Govt and calls upon the working
class to force the Govt to rescind the notification through united struggle.

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