Aadhaar seeding will eliminate multiple PF accounts: EPFO

 The Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) today said it will be able to eliminate multiple account numbers of an individual once the process of seeding Aadhaar is complete.

"Aadhaar seeding and bank account linking will help do away with multiple provident fund accounts, once merger of accounts happens with the help of Aadhaar seeding," Additional Central PF Commissioner S B Sinha told PTI. He said bank account linking will help members to remotely manage accounts and for claim settlements. Speaking on the sidelines of a seminar on provident fund organised by ICC, Regional PF Commissioner Navendu Rai said there were 26 lakh regular contributing members in West Bengal at present, but the number of PF accounts issued from the state was about 70 lakhs.

"On an average, one person has three PF accounts (in West Bengal) due to change in employment," he said.Since, July 1, 2017, Universal Account No (UAN) generation requires mandatory Aadhaar seeding, bank details and mobile number. Sinha said for old account holders, seeding is being carried out. He said online submission of claims and settlements was possible in case of Aadhaar-seeded UAN holders.

"Employees will not require transferring their PF account to the new employer as with Aadhaar-seeded UAN numbers, transfer will happen automatically and seamlessly without any intervention of the member," Rai said. The Employees Provident Fund Organisation will send its officers to residences of pensioners for life certificates in case they need this service, and was procuring gadgets and tools for it. "EPFO has also commenced self-certification for pre-mature withdrawal and pensioners' portal for disbursal details," Sinha added.

The constitutional validity of Aadhaar is being currently heard by Supreme Court. On he second day of its final hearings in the Aadhaar case that challenges its constitutional validity, the Supreme Court on Thursday questioned why a citizen should object to Aadhaar collecting personal information when the same was voluntarily given to insurance companies and mobile operators. 

“You want insurance policy, you go to a private company. You want mobile connection, you go to private entities and part with personal information...The moment the government asks you to give proof of address and other details, you have a problem and you say ‘sorry’,” a five-judge Constitution Bench led by Chief Justice of India (CJI) Dipak Misra said. To this, senior advocate Shyam Divan, representing one of the 27 petitioners, responded, “The objection lay in the possible profiling of individual by aggregation of information with one entity, which ought not to be happening in a democratic government.”

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