Contractual workers of ECHS to be brought under EPFO net
Retirement fund body EPFO Tuesday said contractual workers of ECHS scheme for ex-servicemen will be brought under the ambit of its social security schemes.
The contractual workers of ECHS till now were deprived of the social security benefits under EPFO and it has now has been brought under the ambit of the EPF Act, the Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) said in a statement.
"Ministry of Defence has issued necessary directions to the ECHS for enrolling their contractual staff," it added.
A health care scheme, ECHS was formulated by the Defence Ministry for its ex-servicemen. Similarly, all workers engaged by contractors with Military Engineering Services (MES) and Indian Railways are also being requested to ensure coverage of contractual employees under the EPFO, it said. The statement said that to ensure coverage of workers, principal employers have been advised to ensure that their contractors are registered with the EPFO before award of any contract or making any payments.
Although the EPF & MP Act, 1952 does not differentiate between casual, contractual and regular employees, the EPFO noted that a large number of contractual employees hired including those by the government departments, PSU and autonomous Organisations have remained out of coverage under EPFO. It is the duty of the principal employer to ensure compliance of their outsourced/regular/contract/casual/ daily wager to the schemes under EPF Act, it said.