The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) is one of the two main statutory social security bodies under the Government of India’s Ministry of Labour and Employment and is responsible for regulation and management of provident funds in India, the other being Employees’ State Insurance. It has announced that it will bring health, disability under its wing to provide wider benefits to the salaried personnel of the country. A preliminary proposal in this regard is already under discussion and could prove to be a relief to the salaried class from the ever increasing cost and taxes.
The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) is eyeing expansion in its product offering from provident fund to pension to healthcare, maternity and disability benefits. Officials said the body has a long-term expertise in catering to basic social security entitlement and this makes it apt to become manager of a basic social protection floor (SPF).
A proposal in this regard is in the works and preliminary discussions are going on, said officials. The SPF is a nationally defined set of basic social security guarantees which secure protection aimed at preventing or alleviating poverty, vulnerability and social exclusion, and includes access to essential healthcare and basic income security.
EPFO is initially looking to target more than 450 million workers, 90% of which are in the unorganised sector. The idea will be firmed up over the next few months.