The PMO which happened to have some discussion about the workload of the employers once, issued a direction on its own, with the aim of reducing the workload of employers regarding ESIC and EPFO. Accordingly, a new challan format was devised and the ESIC and EPFO were directed to use it. It was a combined challan to facilitate the employers to pay the contributions of ESIC and EPFO at one go.
It resulted in chaos and posed a lot of administrative and legal problems in these organisations, besides making it inconvenient to the bankers to process the challans and credit the funds to the concerned organisations.
The employers asked why they should pay ESI dues also seven days in advance. Because, they had, as per law, one week’s time more to pay the ESI dues every month.
Things got changed when the ESIC introduced online payment later. But, during the period when the combined challan was being used because of the order of the PMO, the employers, the employees, the ESIC, the EPFO and the Banks had to face a lot of problems. But, nobody did say anything against the novel idea mooted by the PMO. They were reluctant to tell the PMO that it had diagnosed the problem wrongly.
The Lehman-Brothers-factor was at work.
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This website will also be a forum to help the administrators by acting as a medium for expressing genuine grievances of the public, in public interest.
Patricia E. Powers recalls how the 1989 book, ‘The global village: transformations in World life and Media in the 21st century’, predicted that the customer as producer would take the initiative away from the conglomerate and cites Youtube as an example. (Newsweek July 30, 2012).
It would be helpful if the ESIC, which contemplates some more amendments, calls for the opinion of the public also, through their website, before making those proposals into law. Such a course of action will make the amendments, really purposeful and error free.
One response to “When the PMO went wrong …”
Unfortunately I was one of the Senior officer in the Corporate office of ESIC when this instruction from PMO came. As the saying goes, no one had the courage to say the King is naked. The intention was good, but the emphasis merely on the payment and challan was wrong. In fact I had always felt that these two organizations, EPFO and ESIC, can be merged into one single entity called social security organisation. There can be a single contribution, single inspection and payment but the fund collected could be allocated to Pension, PF and ESIC. Inspection report will have a common part, which equally apply for both benefit like employers business details and a part that is relevant to EFP requirement and another for ESIC requirement and where ESIS does not apply due to nature of industry or area of operation, that part will not apply. This require independ expert to work out the modalities and Labour Ministry should take the initiative to club both so that the problem for employers is minimized without taking away any of the benefit to workers. This can not be left to the organisation themselves, because officers want them to be separate. PMO could have given a direction to Labour Ministry to start this process, instead of coming with the poorly thought out clubbing of challan.