EPFO reviews online PF withdrawal plan after SC ruling

EPFO reviews online PF withdrawal plan after SC ruling

EPFO reviews online PF withdrawal plan after SC ruling

Retirement fund body EPFO has decided to re-examine its plan to launch online PF withdrawal facility for its subscribers having Aadhaar enabled PF and bank accounts, in the backdrop of apex court ruling.

The Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) is cautious after the apex court ruled earlier this month that "the production of an Aadhaar card will not be a condition for obtaining any benefits otherwise due to a citizen".

"We are re-examining the proposal of online PF withdrawal facility for subscribers having Aadhaar linked bank and PF accounts. We have sought legal opinion on the issue in the backdrop of latest apex court ruling," EPFO's central provident fund commissioner K K Jalan told PTI.

At present, the subscribers who wish to settle their accounts with the EPFO are required to apply manually for withdrawing PF.

The body is planning to launch some specialised services for those members who have activated their 'Universal Account Number' and in respect of whom KYC seeding is complete and digitally authenticated.

These services include online filing of PF withdrawal claims for all such members whose PF and bank account is seeded with Aadhaar. In all such cases, the claims would have been settled only on submission of a copy of cancelled cheque of Aadhaar enabled bank account of an applicant.

It was also planned that the members whose PF and bank accounts are Aadhaar enabled, should be allowed to file their claims directly without the intervention of the employer, through the online portal.

The body was also working on the use of ATM network of banks to deliver EPFO services such as balance enquiry, claim transfers and claim withdrawals to all the members whose UAN and bank accounts are Aadhaar enabled.

A senior official said that the EPFO has been planning host of services for its subscribers whose UAN and bank account are Aadhaar enabled but now anything could be rolled out only after having proper understanding of apex court ruling on unique identification project.

The Supreme Court has said that the UID number "will not be used" by authorities for any purpose "other than the PDS scheme and in particular, for the purpose of distribution of foodgrains, etc and cooking fuel, such as kerosene. The Aadhaar card may also be used for the purpose of the LPG Distribution Scheme."