Tuesday, November 17, 2020

Letter to Hon'ble Minister of State for Finance by AIBPARC

 Letter to Hon'ble Minister of State for Finance by AIBPARC is reproduced below


 Dated 15.11.2020
Shri Anurag Singh Thakur
Hon'ble Minister of State for Finance
North Block

Respected Shri Anurag Singh Thakur Ji

We recall our meeting with your good self on 25.07.2020 in connection with our humble
contribution of Rs.2.12 crores to PM-CARES FUND. We also requested you to help
resolve our long pending demands. The warmth and a positive tone on your part
reflected empathy and compassion. This in fact proved to be a turning point in the
response of IBA to our issues.
A very favourable interview by the Hon'ble Finance Minister to The Hindu Business
Line followed by the caring concern shown by your Goodself and the Hon'ble Finance
Minister while addressing the 73rd AGM of IBA on 10th November 2020 has been
taken by our Organisation which is a Confederation of Retirees' Associations
representing the largest number of the Bank Pensioners and Retirees as delivery of
justice through your Goodself and Hon'ble Madam. Apprehending the hassles in actual
realisation of our legitimate dreams, we once again request you to consider the
following humble submissions for expeditious settlement.
We wish to express our sincere gratitude to your Goodself for advising the IBA/DFS
and other Officials to resolve our long pending issues which were reiterated in the
address to the 73rd Annual General Meeting of IBA 0n 10.11.2020 by your Goodself
and the Hon’ble Finance Minister. It was heartening to note that the improvements in
the family pension scheme @ 30% of pay drawn by the employee without any ceiling
has been agreed by IBA and the same has been incorporated in the XI Bipartite
Settlement and Joint Note signed between IBA and the Trade Unions as under:
Subject to approval by the Government, it is agreed that the family pension shall
be payable at the uniform rate of 30% of the pay of the deceased employee and
that there shall be no ceiling on family pension. It is agreed that these
provisions, when approved by the Government, shall apply to SBI also.
It is also pertinent to submit that IBA’s recommendation to DFS for improvement
in Family Pension has been under consideration of DFS for about one and half
years and yet again the agreement dated 11.11.2020 makes it subject to approval
by the Government. It is quite intriguing. We therefore request you to get the
family pension improvements implemented along with salary revision including
payment of arrears to the beneficiaries of the improvements in Family pension.

We place it on record our deep sense of Gratitude for the inspiring speech and
direction to IBA and DFS by you and Hon’ble Finance Minister. It was our long
pending Request and emotionally close to our heart as it has a direct impact on the
life and well-being of the spouses of the deceased employees and the beneficiaries
are mostly the Widows who are living in penury.
We take this opportunity to once again thank you for being kind and generous.
Hon'ble Sir, you will appreciate that our demand for the updation of pension which has
been impacting the life of every pensioner including the family pensioners has not
been settled yet. Even at the cost of repetition, we wish to mention that despite several
rulings by the Apex Court that the Salary Revision and Pension Revision are
inseparable; Pension is not a bounty; Pension is a deferred wage etc, our Pension has
not been revised despite Six Salary Revision Settlements after 1987. It has created
such an anomalous and unfair situation that a Top Executive Grade General Manager
who retired after 1.11.1987, draws lesser pension than a senior clerk who retires
currently. We had expected this also to be set right in the Salary Revision Settlement
which was signed by the concerned parties on 11.11.2020 immediately after your
advice to the IBA and DFS. It has left more than 4,00,000 pensioners disappointed. In
this connection we wish to once again submit the following for your kind and
sympathetic consideration:
Our request for updation of pension is not a demand to grant a fresh benefit as it is
already provided in the Pension Settlement of 1993 and incorporated in Bank Pension
Regulations 1995 vide Regulation 35(1) as under:
Basic Pension and Additional Pension, wherever applicable, shall be updated
as per the formulae given in Appendix - I (Government Gazette Notification No.9
dated 1.3.2003)
It is inexplicable and beyond human comprehension as to why the benefit of a
legal and pre-existing provision is being denied in a completely brazen and
arbitrary manner. What has hurt the senior and super senior citizens of the
banking industry more is that despite your unambiguous message, the
procrastination continues on some pretext or the other.
We on our part as a responsible organisation have been writing to Hon'ble FM,
your Goodself, DFS and IBA for several years duly furnishing the detailed
working reiterating that the annual increase in the pension for all the banks
including SBI comes to Rs. 5,322 crores, which does not involve any additional
provision at this juncture as illustrated below:

a) The amount of regular pension and family pension paid during the year 2018-
19 was Rs.17,415.16 crores
b) The interest income and regular annual contribution to the Pension fund
was Rs. 32,023.00 crores
c) Undisbursed/unutilised surplus in the Pension Fund for the year 2018-19
was Rs.14,607.84 crores
d) Additional liability towards pension updation using RBI updation factors
comes to Rs.5,322.87 crores
(The cost of updation has been calculated for all the 4,41,000 pensioners who
have retired upto 31.10.2017 and are eligible for updation of their pension as per
the salary revision settled on 11.11.2020).
From the above details it is clear that even after grant of updation of pension
there will remain an annual surplus of Rs. 9,284.97 crores thereby obviating the
need for any additional immediate provision and thus protecting the balance
sheets of the banks. If any bank has not followed the provisioning norms as per
Pension Regulations or misutilised the Fund, that alone would be required to
provide if their annual actuarial estimate in terms of Regulation 11 so warranted.
It is humbly submitted that the Public Sector Banks are the State within the meaning
of Article 12 of the Constitution and Bank Pension Regulations are made in exercise
of the powers conferred by clause (f) of sub-section (2) of Section 19 of the Banking
Companies (Acquisition and Transfer of Undertakings) Act, 1970 by the Boards of the
Banks in consultation with RBI and with the previous sanction of the Central
Government. Hence it is the statutory obligation on the part of the banks to
implement these regulations including Regulation 35(1) which provides for the
updation of the pension. While the guidelines from the Banking Regulators to
provide for NPAs are followed without blinking, it is beyond common
comprehension as to why statutory provisions are not being implemented
perpetually with impunity.
Hon'ble Sir, your address and reiteration by Hon'ble FM to the 73rd AGM of IBA
have truly raised the hopes and aspirations of the rank and file of our
membership who contributed to the nation building during their active service
and continue to chip in even after retirement whenever the occasions demanded
like PMJDY campaign, Demonetization etc. You are there and our last hope to
help realize our legitimate due.
We humbly request you to settle this long pending issue urgently so that this
hitherto neglected section of the pensioners could get the benefit of revision of
pension alongwith the revision of salary for the serving employees. Meanwhile,
we request for grant of interim relief based on the RBI Pension Updation

We also request you be kind enough to resolve the issue of 100% DA
neutralisation to Pre-November 2002 retirees who continue to be discriminated
unfortunate lot. It may be appreciated that price rise affects all retirees in equal
measure and discriminating against senior retirees who retired before
1.11.2002, is not only not legal but also against the principles of equity and
fairness while being violative of Article 14 of the Constitution.
The pensioners and retirees have been discriminated in the matter of Medical
Insurance Scheme which was introduced in the year 2015 in accordance with
the guidelines issued by DFS to IBA vide letter dated 24.02.2012 to evolve
medical insurance scheme for both the serving employees and retired
employees. While implementing the same IBA advised the banks to bear the
Medical Insurance Premium for serving employees and left the retirees to fend
for themselves if the wished to join the scheme. The introductory premium
which was Rs.7,500 in the first year was successively increased to more than
Rs.90,000/ for Health care domiciliary treatment for the year 2019-20 thus
making it unaffordable out of meagre pension drawn. It has driven many out of
the scheme on the grounds of unaffordability. It will not be out of place to
mention here that the Board Level Retirees - ED/MD/CEO/CMD are provided free
medical facility as they were enjoying during their service. The serving
employees are also provided free medical facility. It therefore becomes very
brazen to discriminate against retirees alone against the spirit of Government
Communication dated 24.02.2012.
In view of the forgoing submissions, we humbly request you to advise DFS &
IBA to settle these issues also forthwith without further loss of time and provide
much awaited relief to those warriors who are in the twilight of their life.
We shall always remain grateful to you for rendering justice to us at this stage
of our life.
With Best Regards,
Yours Sincerely,
K V Acharya      S Sarkar
Presiden         t    General Secretary
Joint Convener -CBPRO




Tuesday, November 3, 2020

CBPRO letter addressed to Finance Minister on Updation of Pension

Copy of CBPRO letter addressed to Finance Minister on Updation of Pension etc is  reproduced below

Dated: 31.10.2020

Ms Nirmala Sitharaman
Hon'ble Finance Minister Government of India
North Block, New Delhi

Respected Madam.

Updation of Pension and Other Issues

We are immensely delighted to go through Your highly Inspiring Interview in Business Line dated 29th October 2020 wherein You gave genuine Accolades and Encomiums to the Services rendered by the Banking Community both Past and Present throughout and specially during the present Covid 19 Pandemic. It has also evoked Great Hopes in the minds and hearts of Bank Pensioners and Retirees who have been knocking the doors of the DFS and IBA for the last several years.

We, as the largest Coordination of various National level Bank Pensioners & Retirees Organisations (CBPRO) consisting of Federation of SBI Pensioners Associations, AIBPARC, RBONC, AIRBEA AND FORBE with a membership of over Four Lakhs, profusely Thank Your Good Self for responding so wholesomely with concern and care to the Long Pending

Grievances of the Senior and Super Senior Citizens of the Banking Industry.

Your Good Self has taken initiatives by very positively advising the Secretary, Department of Financial Services, Chairman of SBI and Chairman of IBA to render justice to us mainly on the issues concerning the Bank Pensioners and Retirees. We once again submit the list of our major pending issues hereunder

1. Improvement in Family Pension as available to Government and RBI Pensioners

2. Updation of Pension as per RBI Formula

3. Uniform DA Compensation to All Retirees without Discrimination as available to Government & RBI Pensioners

4. Reckoning of Special Allowances attracting DA for Terminal Benefits.

Respected Madam, we had elaborately explained to Your Good Self, DFS and IBA in our several Letters and Memoranda, the legal angle and Honourable Supreme Court Judgements lending legitimacy to our Requests for Updation of Pension
The Pension Fund of all the Banks is robust. It is important to note that the Pension Updation cost and any other Pension related Improvements like Family Pension and Uniform DA Compensation to All Retirees will be paid out of the Pension Fund of the Banks.

Respected Madam, as You know that the very Old Retirees prior to November 2002 are subjected to Double Jeopardy as their Basic Pension is not only very low due to continuous Non Updation of Pension but they are also discriminated against by denying 100% DA Neutralization. It is appalling to see that this has resulted in, even a General Manager retired in 1990s draws pension as low as Rs.27000/per month including DA which is much less than the Pension drawn by a Clerical Staff Retiring today. So far as the Family Pensioners(Mostly Women Spouses of Deceased Pensioners) are concerned, it is even more pitiable as their Pension including DA is just about Rs 4000 to Rs. 15000/only as the Family Pension suffers from low percentage of 15% Basic Pay as against a uniform rate of 30% in Government and RBI that too with a specified ceiling on the amount of Family Pension.

It is unfortunate that Pension Updation was never done though several periodical Wage Revisions had taken place.

Respected Madam, at this juncture, it is a Great Relief and Solace to us Specially to quite a large number of Super Senior Citizens of Banking Industry that You have so rightly and caringly acknowledged and recognised the Contributions and Services of the Banking Community in Implementing the Policies, Programmes and Economic Packages of our Government which brought about Social, Agricultural, Industrial and Educational Revolutions in the Country. We as Bank Pensioners and Retirees feel Fortunate and Proud to have been a part of this Great Movement. This spirit of service also made many of us to voluntarily rush to help our Brethren in the Banks during the PM's Massive Jan Dhan Programme, Demonetization Exercise and Recovery Campaigns by the Banks The Bank Pensioners and Retirees Organisations also collected the Voluntary Contributions from their Members to PM CARES FUND to the tune of more than Rs. Four Crores and also contributed to PM'S RELIEF and CM's RELIEF FUNDS. We are Happy that we are privileged to have so contributed to help redress the distress of those affected by COVID 19.

We will be highly obliged and remain Grateful to you and Our Government for the Initiatives You have taken to end the Injustices to which we are pushed to and render Justice, restore the Dignity and Enliven the remaining part of our Life with Peace and Pride.

We request You to kindly accept our sincere Thanks and Respectful Regards

With Best Regards,

Yours Sincerely,

(A. Ramesh Babu) (K.V. Acharya) 

Joint Conveners,