As many as 38,71,664 employees have been asked to withdraw Rs 44,054.72 crore from the Employees Provident Fund (EPF) account since the lockdown began in the country, claims Parliament. The government implemented a nationwide lockdown on March 25, 2020 to prevent the spread of the deadly coronavirus. Labor Minister Santosh Ganguly, in a written reply to the Rajya Sabha, said that so far a total of Rs 36,711, E64F EPF withdrawal demand has been settled at a cost of Rs 44,054.722 crore.
The highest withdrawal in Maharashtra
According to the reply, these withdrawals also include claims related to Covid-19. During the lockdown, 7,23,986 claims were made in Maharashtra from March 25 to August 31, with a maximum of Rs 8,968.45 crore raised. Karnataka was later withdrawn Rs 4,8,114 crore under claims of Rs 41.5.52 crore and Tamil Nadu (including Puducherry) withdrew Rs 5,599.91 crore for 20,6 claims2 claims. During this period, Rs 3,308.57 crore was raised in Delhi under 3,16,671 claims for withdrawal of EPF. The government amended the 1952 EPF scheme, under which COPID advances could be taken from the EPF. There is no need to refund this advance.
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The Prime Minister has revised the EPF project as part of the Prime Minister’s Poor Welfare Scheme to provide relief to the people in the Covid-19 crisis. In this way, employees will be able to withdraw from their EPF account the amount of three months basic salary and value added allowance or 755 per cent of the total amount deposited in their EPF account, whichever is less. This has been withdrawn from the Provident Fund account under this facility.
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The ministry said more steps had been taken to provide relief to workers during the Covid-19 crisis. For the six months from March to August 2020, 12-12 per cent of the money was deposited by the government in the provident fund account of both the employee and the employer. This amount was deposited in enterprises where less than 100 employees work and 100% of such employees had less than Rs 15,000 per month. In addition, the government has reduced its contribution to the EPF from 12 to 10 percent so that more cash is available to employees. This provision was made for May, June and July 2020.