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Govt employees hold rally in Delhi seeking restoration of old pension scheme

 New Delhi, Oct 2: Thousands of government employees from across the country converged at Ramlila Maidan in the national capital on Sunday, seeking restoration of the old pension scheme (OPS).

The employees, under the aegis of the National Movement for Old Pension Scheme (NMOPS), organised a rally to raise their demand before the Centre.

The ‘Pension Shankhnaad Maharally’ has been organised with the aim of pressurising the Centre to implement the old pension scheme instead of the existing National Pension Scheme (NPS).

The organisers of the rally told mediapersons that four states have already announced implementation of the OPS, then why cannot the Centre implement it.

Thousands of government employees from various parts of the country participated in the rally at Ramlila Maidan.

The rally is being organised, even as the Centre in March this year had come up with a one-time option for government employees to opt for the old pension scheme. 

According to a notification by the ministry of personnel, the employees who joined the central government services against posts advertised or notified before December 22, 2003, the day NPS was notified, are eligible to join the old pension scheme under the Central Civil Services (Pension) Rules, 1972 (now 2021).

The select group of government servants can opt for this option by August 31, 2023. The option once exercised shall be final, the ministry had said.

The move came following various representations and references and court decisions in this regard, it said.

“It has now been decided that, in all cases where the central government civil employee has been appointed against a post or vacancy which was advertised/ notified for recruitment/appointment, prior to the date of notification for NPS i.e. 22.12.2003 and is covered under the NPS on joining service on or after 01.01.2004, may be given a one-time option to be covered under the CCS(Pension) Rules, 1972 (now 2021),” the order had said.

Those government servants who are eligible to exercise the option, “but who do not exercise this option by the stipulated date”, would continue to be covered by the National Pension System, the order had stated.

Under OPS, employees get a defined pension. An employee is entitled for a 50 per cent amount of the last drawn salary as pension.

OPS was discontinued by the NDA government in 2003 with effect from April 1, 2004.

Whereas under the NPS, employees contribute 10 per cent of their basic salary towards pension while the government contributes 14 per cent.

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