Teachers of Haridwar district on Sunday took out a protest rally over the issue of their pension in Roorkee. They alleged that national pension scheme (NPS), which is currently effective, was completely against their interests. They demanded that the NPS should be scrapped and that the state government should re-introduce the old pension scheme (OPS). About 1,000 teachers took part in the protest rally.
The convener of the rally was the Uttarakhand Shikshak Mahasangh Haridwar (USMH) with the support of all six teachers’ associations of the district. “NPS is a share market-based scheme that means NPS is subject to an all-time gamble that generally rules in all transactions of share market. It is risk based scheme offered by the government over our hard-earned money whereas any teacher after retirement wishes to live a life on risk free earning,” said Anil Sharma, patron of USMH.
According to him, State Government has replaced OPS with NPS since October, 2005. Under the provisions of new pension scheme, a sum of money will be deducted every month from the salary of teachers and an equal amount of that money will be given by government to create a head of the pension. The final sum of money (of teachers and state government) will be handled by national securities depository limited (NSDL) which invests this money in the share market to obtain monetary benefits. However, teachers may take back 60 percent of money from the money deducted from their salary.
Teachers alleged that under the NPS they would only get a sum Rs 1,500 to 2,000 per month in the name of pension. “Under the OPS, each teacher is getting around Rs 30,000 as pension after his retirement whereas new pension is just offering a paltry sum. And how can we survive in our old days without sufficient money,” said Ashok Chauhan, a primary school teacher from Bahadrabad.
The USMH also submitted a memorandum to local administration on the occasion.