EPFO likely to sue ‘defaulter’ TSRTC

Highlights

  • Corporation yet to clear Rs 760.62 crore PF dues
  • PF Trust status in trouble post-Nov 15

Hyderabad: Notwithstanding being driven to the wall on various counts, and with no immediate signs of restoration of normalcy, the TSRTC is now grappled with another worry and one that can have damaging ramifications.

As an employer, it has emerged as a significant defaulter having failed to contribute to PF accounts of employees with the amount running to a staggering Rs 760.62 crore.

The Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) has identified that TSRTC is yet to provide the outstanding amount towards PF accounts of its employees. It has directed the Managing Director of the state-run road carrier to submit details of all PF accounts and the dues thereof by November 15. A further default will tantamount to TSRTC losing out on its PF Trust status.

EPFO exempts select organisations to maintain their own PF Trusts subject to monitoring by the central organisation. TSRTC is also a PF Trust and has been managing the provident fund contributions from employees and the management of its own accord. However, it is reportedly utilising PF funds for other cash requirements.

EPFO had slapped notices on TSRTC on several occasions. Two years ago, the Corporation paid the amount but defaulted in 2017-19. EPFO auditing reports highlighted that TSRTC has defaulted to the tune of over Rs 760 crore. This frequent default is also making it difficult when comes to calculating pension amounts of individuals.

Vexed with such an erratic practice, the Corporation has been ordered by EPFO to furnish all details of the past two years. If TSRTC fails to deposit the PF amount in time, EPFO is likely to lodge a criminal case against the corporation.

As a recover measure, EPFO has the right to confiscate properties of TSRTC to the value of the defaulted amount. After collecting the PF contributions, EPFO is likely to scrap the PF Trust status that TSRTC currently enjoys.

It may be recalled that on an earlier occasion, when EPFO was about to cancel PF Trust status, the Corporation had approached courts and sought temporary exemption. In a further blow, the time limit for temporary exemption has expired, points out a union leader.

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