The state government is all set to introduce e-payment scheme for primary and secondary teachers and non-teaching staffs by which they will get pension on the same day they retire.
Also, the money lying in their Provident Fund will get automatically transferred to their savings bank accounts on the day of their retirement.
This will benefit six lakh employees in batches. In addition to the teachers, employees working in Zilla Parishad, panchayats, civic bodies and Wakf Boards will get this benefit.
Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had asked the state Finance department to take up the project to reduce the ordeal of teachers and non teaching staff in primary and secondary schools. It may be recalled that during the Left Front regime the teachers who retired had to run from the pillar to post to get their pension and PF. Many primary and secondary teachers died after failing to get pension. The teachers had organised a series of movements in support of their demand but the then Finance minister, Asim Dasgupta who himself was a teacher, did not fulfill their demands. There were cases when primary and secondary school teachers got their pension several years after retirement as their service books had not been updated. Sometimes, they had to grease the palms of the clerks to update the service books. After coming to power for the second consecutive time, Mamata Banerjee held meetings with the Finance department officials to find out ways and means to reduce the ordeal of teachers.
Accordingly, hectic work is on in the Finance department to give the e pension portal the final shape. Senior officials of West Bengal Audit and Accounts Service are being given special training so that the scheme can be implemented from the next financial year. The data collected from the districts are being scrutinised. The schools have been asked to prepare lists of teachers and non teaching staff who would retire and update their service books and check the names, date of joining of the teachers. “In many cases, the spellings of the names of the teachers found in the school leaving certificates varied from those issued by the university. This gave rise to a major problem. All the schools have been asked to check the spellings of the names and surnames of teachers and non teaching staffs carefully before sending information to the Finance department,” a senior state government official said.
One year before the retirement of teachers and non teaching staffs, the school Education department will send all information about them to the Directorate of Pension Provident Fund and Group Insurance. The directorate will scrutinise the information and send them to the treasury. Thus, on the day of retirement, the pension and PF will be deposited in the savings bank account of the teacher or non teaching staff. Earlier, the data used to be maintained in huge ledger books and several months passed to take them from one department to another and that delayed the whole process.