The Ministry of Railways is having major financial difficulties disbursing pensions to its employees, and has demanded Rs. 9.8 billion from the government for this purpose.
After receiving complaints about AGPR delays in disbursing pensions to various ministries, the Federal Ombudsman, Ejaz Ahmad Qureshi, formed a Monitoring Committee led by Muhammad Ayub Tarin, Senior Advisor and former Additional Auditor General, to assess the implementation status of pension reforms.
The committee also convened the AGPR, Ministry of Finance, Ministry of Railways, Ministry of National Health Services, Federal Directorate of Education, and Association for the Welfare of Retired Persons (AWRP) to discuss how the pension payment procedure may be made more easier for retirees.
According to Tarin, pensioners and their families are still facing significant financial hardships as a result of delays in the finalization of pension cases. Despite the fact that, as directed by WMS, Pension Cells have been established in all Ministries and Divisions, gaps in the submission of pension cases have been detected, according to the AGPR representative.
However, in family pension cases, payment of the pension is delayed due to legal concerns such as the declaration of legal heirs, non-availability of the widow’s bank account, and family member eligibility. The AGPR promised to complete the pension cases within 30 days of receiving the papers.
The AGPR also stated that they have begun automating service statements/service books on the SAP system, which will aid in the early completion of pension claims.
They were notified by the Ministry of Health Services that no pension case was pending with them. The Ministry of Railways has told the government that it is experiencing major financial difficulties in disbursing pensions to its personnel and has requested that the government provide Rs. 9.8 billion for this reason. As soon as the monies are received, all pensioner dues would be cleared.
The Finance Division promised complete cooperation in the delegation of powers to the BS-21 officer for the approval of pensions from the PAO/Federal Secretary. The Ombudsman directed all Ministries/Divisions to make the process of completing essential paperwork for the grant of a pension on retirement as simple as possible for retirees. He also ordered that the Monitoring Committee on the Implementation of Pension Reforms convene on a monthly basis.