Forwarding of minutes of the 24th meeting of Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies (SCOVA).
F. No. 42/2/2014-P&PW(G)
Government of India
Ministry of Personnel, Public Grievances & Pensions
Department of Pension & Pensioners’ & Welfare
3rd Floor, Lok Nayak Bhavan
Khan Market, New Delhi – 110003
Date: 24th Feb, 2014
Subject: Forwarding of minutes of the 24th meeting of Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies (SCOVA).
Please find enclosed herewith a copy of minutes the 24 meeting of Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies (SCOVA) heId on 05 February, 2014 under the Chairmanship of Hon’ble MOS (PP) at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, New Delhi for your kind perusal.
Enclosure:- as above
Dy. Secretary (P)
Minutes of the 24th meeting of Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies (SCOVA) held on 05.02.2014 under the Chairmanship of Hon’ble MOS(PP) at Vigyan Bhawan Annexe, New Delhi
The list of Participants is at Annexure-(I)
2. At the outset Joint Secretary (P) welcomed Hon’ble MOS(PP), representatives of Pensioners Associations and the participating officers of various Ministries/Departments. She mentioned that the Pensioners Associations had played an important role by bringing forth issues of common areas of interests to the pensioners. It was further added that under the overall guidance of the Hon’ble MOS(PP),the Department has continued the drive to simplify the processes/rules under the CCS(Pension) Rules. These would be formally released very soon.
On the recommendation of the Parliamentary Standing Committee the number of Pensioner Associations identified for the Pensioners Portal are being increased.
It was further added that selection of issues for inclusion as agenda for the SCOVA meeting was done carefully and consciously. No issue was left unaddressed. All issues relating to individual Ministries/Departments were forwarded to them and best efforts were put in to ensure that all issues are responded to.
3. Thereafter, Hon’ble MOS(PP),Chairman, SCOVA, welcomed the participants. He stated that the SCOVA is now meeting twice a year to be better able to address and monitor pension issues raised by SCOVA members. Many issues have been brought to a logical conclusion, and a number of pending issues deliberated upon and solutions worked out during deliberations of SCOVA. This has been possible due to regular reviews and proactive action taken by various Ministries/Departments. The Minister appreciated the contribution made by Pensioners Associations and also SCOVA members. Hon’ble MOS(PP) added that since last meeting a considerable progress has been made in issue of revision of PPOs of pre-2006 pensioners. He further mentioned that he had himself taken up pensioners issues with the Ministers of Railways, Defence and Health. As a result, there was considerable progress in disposal of revision cases as well as pending grievances. The Department was able to dispose of 22,498 grievances during the year, which resulted in bringing down the pendency to 6,882 as on 31.12.2013.
He further stated that Pensioners have served the country and helped in the nation building process. Therefore, it is our duty to take care of their welfare. A large number of issues of pensioners welfare are health related and have been taken up with Ministry of Health & Family Welfare, and hopefully solutions would be reached. An EFC memo on the Medical Insurance Scheme has been circulated by M/o Health & Family Welfare and will be finalized soon. The Hon’ble Minister, also appreciated the role of the Pensioner Associations, which had handed over a cheque for Prime Minister’s Relief Fund for the Uttrakhand Disaster.
He informed the SCOVA of his two important recent initiatives. (i) an Online Pension Sanction and Payment Tracking System called ‘Bhavishya’ which is currently in operation in 15 Organisations/Departments. This would benefit individual pensioners as well as administrative authorities. (ii) a programme called ‘Sankalp’ to channelize skill and experience of pensioners into socially useful and constructive work. This would be taken up on a pilot basis initially for 500 pensioners. This Department is also advising Ministries/Departments to conduct pre-retiring counseling/workshops to prepare the retiring officials for life after retirement specially formalities required to be completed to avail of pensionary dues, CGHS benefits, financial investments, preparation of Will etc. He was confident that this would be much appreciated by the pensioners and would give them continuous satisfaction and fulfillment as they will continue to contribute to society and nation building.
4. Thereafter, the Action Taken Report of 23rd SCOVA meeting and Fresh Agenda items of 24th SCOVA meeting were taken up for discussion.
Salient points of the discussions are reproduced below while the item wise decisions taken on the ATR are at Annexure A and those for the Fresh Agenda are at Annexure-B.
5. Salient Points of the discussion.
(A). Action Taken Report (ATR) raised in the 23rd meeting of SCOVA.
i) Sl. No. 1 of ATR:
Status of issue of revised PPOsto pre-2006 pensioners.
The latest status and further course of action in respect of PPOsis as under:-
a) CPAO intimated that as on 4th February, 2014 approximately 65,000 cases were pending for revision.
Secretary (Pension) informed that the Government has taken all possible steps to facilitate the completion of this task. Despite all these efforts, the very old cases where details are not forthcoming from pensioners and banks and are also not available with the Ministries and Departments are still pending. Secretary requested all the Associations to reach out to the pensioners to obtain the missing information. He also asked CPAO to segregate the remaining 65,000 cases Ministries/ Departments wise and conduct meeting with groups of 3-4 Ministries every week to facilitate early disposal of these cases.
b) Ministry of Railways informed that as on date approximately 90,000 cases are left for revision. As these remaining cases are the complicated ones, these could be revised only by 30, Sep, 2014. On the request of an Association the Ministry of Railways provided zone wise figures of pending pre-2006 PPOs.(Ann-II)
Target date:- 30th September, 2014.
c) Department of Posts informed that only 1 395 cases remain for revision.
Target date- 31st March, 2014.
d) Department of Telecommunications informed that of the approximately 29,000 pending cases, 17,000 pertains to BSNL and remaining relate to Department of Telecommunication.
Target date:- 30th June, 2014
e) Ministry of Defence informed that out of total 18.7 lakh pre-2006 pensioners, 1.8 lakh are Defence Civilian pensioners. 10 5 lakh PPOs have been revised, of which 84,000 PPOs pertain to Defence Civilians. On issue raised by the Associations Hon’bel MOS(PP) desired that the North-East Region must be covered int he regular Pension Adalats conducted by the Ministry of Defence. He would take up this issue with the Hon’ble Raksha Mantri.
Target date:- 30th September, 2014.
(Action: CPAO, M/o Railways, D/o Posts,
D/o Telecom, M/o Defence & D/o PPW)
ii). Decisions on Sl.No 2 to 7 of ATR may be seen on Annexure A.
a) S.No 2 of ATR:-
(a) New dispensary for Panchkula.
Ministry of Health & FW have not agreed to the request for opening of a new CGHS dispensary at Panchkula. The Hon’ble MOS(PP) stated that he will take up the matter again with the Hon’ble Minister of Health & Family Welfare.
(b) Computerisation of CGHS dispensary at Jammu.
The representative of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare intimated that the funds for the Jammu dispensary have been released. The process of computerization of dispensary at Jammu is likely to be completed shortly. Hence the item was closed.
b) S.No 7 of ATR:- Nomination facility for reimbursement of expenses incurred under CGHS.
M/o of Health & FW have issued an OM no S-11011/12/2013-CGHS(P) dated 25.09.2013 providing facility of Nomination for re-imbursement of Medical expenses in the event of death of Principal CGHS card holder.
c) (23.4) of ATR
Broad Banding of Disability Element for Pre-1996 cases.
The Department of Ex-Servlcem Welfare informed that the case is being pursued vigorously with the Department of Expenditure, where it is under consideration. The issue of providing benefit of modified parity on disability element for invalid/disabled pensioners, which had been raised int he last SCOVA meeting has still not been resolved. This is a serious matter and will be taken up by Hon’ble MOS(PP) with the Hon’ble Raksha Mantri.
(Action: D/o Expenditure & D/o Ex-Servicemen Welfare)
(B) FRESH AGENDA ITEMS FOR 24th SCOVA MEETING.
The decisions on the fresh agenda may kindly be seen at Annexure B. Salient points are below:-
(24.1) Health Insurance Scheme for pensioners including those residing at non-CGHS areas.
An EFC memo on the proposed Health Insurance Scheme has been circulated to various Ministries/Departments for comments. The Scheme would benefit a large number of pensioners who at present cannot avail of CGHS benefits. The representative of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare informed that the Scheme envisages similar hospitalization benefits as in CGHS but does not include OPD facility. The beneficiaries of the Scheme would be entitled to a Fixed Medical Allowance (FMA) for OPD facility.
(Action: Ministry of Health &. Family Welfare)
(24.2) Dedicated day for pensioners.
All the Ministries/Departments were agreeable to fix a time in any day in a week to meeting the pensioners. They would inform the day fixed for the activity by 28th February, 2014. The matter will therefore be dropped after the issue of orders for the same.
(Action: All Ministries)
(24.3) Special Family Pension for the Widows of Disabled War Veterans The representatives of M/o Defence informed that the issue is being actively pursued and comments are awaited from CGDA. Ministry of Defence was asked to expedite the same. For the civil side issue is being examined by D/oP&PW for Civil pensioners In consultation with Mia Home Affairs and other concerned Departments.
(Action :- Ministry of Defence & D/oPPW)
(24.4) Reimbursement of medical expenses to CGHS beneficiaries
The representative of Ministry of Health & Family Welfare informed that the reimbursement on account of medical procedures are being reimbursed as per the rates in PGI, Chandigarh. As far as implants are concerned there are ceiling rates prescribed under CGHS and are being reimbursed as per CGHS rates. The representatives of Health Ministry informed that if there is any specific case of non-adherence, in this regard that may be referred to DoPPW& Ministry of Health & Family Welfare. The item may therefore be closed.
(Action: Ministry of Health & Family Welfare)
(24 5) Grant of T.A. to Non-official Members attending the SCOVA meetings- Permission to perform journey by AIR and grant of actual expenses, when the journey performed is above 1,000 km,
A proposaI from DoPPW is under consideration in D/o Expenditure.
(Action: DoP&PW & D/o Expenditure)
The meeting ended with a vote of thanks to the Chair.