Govt lays bill in LS to hike gratuity ceiling

The Payment of Gratuity (Amendment) Bill, 2010, which was introduced in Lok Sabha on Thursday, proposed to enhance the ceiling of Rs 3.5 lakh on the maximum amount of gratuity payable under the Act to Rs 10 lakh.

Elaborating on the implications for the beneficiaries D L Sachdev, leader of CPI-affiliated All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), said earlier any amount over and above Rs 3.5 lakh was under the purview of income tax.  “However, when this new law comes into effect, gratuity amount upto Rs 10 lakh will be tax free,” he told Deccan Herald.

Meanwhile, a Parliamentary Committee has asked the Centre to devise an appropriate mechanism for monitoring the fund managers for the Employees’ Provident Fund.

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation has chosen three new fund managers–ICICI Prudential Asset Management Company, HSBC-AMC, Reliance Capital AMC–to manage the funds that get deployed in the EPF account. State Bank of India, which used to manage EPF earlier, remained the sole public sector participant.

“The Committee strongly feels that there is a need to establish accountability so that subscribers’ money is not misused or invested imprudently by the fund managers,” the Standing Committee on Labour said in a recent report.

The report, which was placed before Parliament, said the panel hoped that the Central Board of Trustees should have a “foolproof system of monitoring and supervision” over these fund managers for evaluating their performance. “However, the Committee is not convinced with the reply of the Government that in case of any slippage by these fund managers no firm action is taken against them as appointment of a fund manager is a cumbersome process,” it said.

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