PMSYM Scheme: Enrolment in pension scheme for low-income workers immersing fast

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In the two years and four months as PMSYM was started, just a small over 45 lakh people secured the pension cover. New enrolments under the voluntary and central-sector Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan (PMSYM) scheme that assures a monthly pension of Rs 3,000 from the age of 60 years for domestic workers, rickshaw pullers and other low-income workers have been immersing fast and may soon be down to zero. 

The apparent unravelling of the scheme, launched on February 15, 2019, with an announced objective to give the cover to 10 crore such workers in five years, can be allocated to the income loss tolerated by these unorganised-sector workers due to the Covid-19 pandemic and a lack of strength with which the government executes it.

In the two years and four months since Pradhan Mantri Shram Yogi Maandhan (PMSYM) was launched, a little over 45 lakh people secured pension cover. And even amid those registered, there is an excessive rate of default, when it too comes to building the periodical contributions.

A worker in the middle of 18-40 years of age and receiving a salary of less than Rs 15,000 a month can join in this scheme, in which the Centre makes an equal contribution as that of the beneficiary. A worker who is joining the pension scheme at 18 years wants to come up with as little as Rs 55 per month to assure a certain monthly pension total sum of Rs 3000 after reaching the age of 60 years.

The steep decrease in enrollment under the scheme could also be because people don’t make out incentivised to endure the periodical payments, analysts said.

While introducing the interim Budget for 2019-20, then finance minister Piyush Goyal had said that at least 10 crore labourers and workers in the unorganised sector would avail themselves of the assistance of the scheme within five years.

A similar scheme such as Pradhan Mantri Laghu Vyapari Maan-Dhan Yojana has also notified just 43,986 enrolments since it came into effect on July 22, 2019. Under this voluntary and contributory pension scheme, small traders, retail traders, shopkeepers and self-employed persons, with an annual turnover not more than Rs 1.5 crore can join in within the 18-40 years age bracket.

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