MINISTRY OF LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT
UNSTARRED QUESTION NO 154
ANSWERED ON 24.11.2014
COVERAGE UNDER EPFO
154 . Mahadik Shri Dhananjay Bhimrao, Gavit Dr. Heena Vijaykumar
Patil Shri Vijaysinh Mohite, Satav Shri Rajeev Shankarrao, Sule Smt. Supriya Sadanand
Will the Minister of LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT be pleased to state:-
(a)whether a large number of workers from the construction sector as well as contract employees are not covered under the Employees` Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO);
(b)if so, the details thereof and the reasons therefor;
(c)whether workers from these sectors were unable to retrieve their savings with EPFO due to frequent job changes; and if so, the quantum of amount lying with EPFO as inoperative;
(d)whether the EPFO has constituted any committee to bring in more workers including workers from these sectors and if so, whether the committee has submitted its reports; and
(e)if so, the action taken thereon along with various other steps taken by the Government for the benefit of workers under EPFO?
MINISTER OF STATE (IC) FOR LABOUR AND EMPLOYMENT (SHRI BANDARU DATTATREYA)
(a) & (b): The Employees’ Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952 is applicable to 187 categories of industries and classes of establishments where 20 or more persons are working. Government has notified a Schedule Head - “Building & Construction Industry” vide GSR No. 1069 dated 11.10.1980.
There is no distinction between regular and contract workers under the Act. The workers whether regular or contractual working in the covered establishments are enrolled as EPF members.
(c): There are instances came to the notice of EPFO where the workers of these sectors face difficulties while retrieving their savings with EPFO due to frequent job changes. As per the unaudited Annual Account of the Organization for the year 2013-14, Rs. 27,448.54 Crore is lying in Inoperative Account.
(d) & (e): The Central Board of Trustees, EPF decided in their 204th meeting held on 26.08.2014 to constitute two non-statutory Sub-Committees, one for Construction Workers and the other for the Contract Workers with the terms of reference that these sub-committees will suggest mechanism to the Central Board so that coverage of both construction and contract workers can be increased. These sub-committees were constituted on 15.10.2014. The sub-committees met separately on 31.10.2014 and made some recommendations which are to be placed before the next meeting of the Central Board for consideration. Besides, EPFO have taken the following steps for benefits of workers:-
i. The process of allotting Universal Account Number has already started which will result in portability of the accounts.
ii. For transfer of accumulations on job/location change, provision for online transfer of accumulations has been put in place.
iii. Provision has been made in the Official website which will help the members to access their PF accounts online.
Source: Lok Sabha