The Municipal Corporation of Delhi has deleted the names of 3,583 beneficiaries from its pension scheme after finding out that they had been illegally drawing pension benefits from both the civic body and the Delhi Government.
The Deputy Commissioners of all the 12 MCD zones have also been directed to take further action to recover the pension amount illegally received by them. The beneficiaries were identified after cross checking the details of those drawing pension from the Delhi Government's Social Welfare Department and those availing of the benefit from the MCD.
The matter came to light after an internal enquiry was conducted by the MCD following complaints received last year about certain irregularities in the pension scheme for the elderly, widows and the physically challenged.
Following preliminary investigations, the civic body had instituted a detailed inquiry last month to identify the beneficiaries collecting double pension in violation of the rule that states that a person can avail such a benefit either from the MCD or from the Delhi Government.
According to officials, the highest number of defaulters were found in MCD West Zone (932), followed by Shahdara North (618), Civil Lines (445), South Zone (399), City Zone (262), Rohini (249) and Shahdara South (218).
Leader of MCD House Subhash Arya said: “The names of dual pensioners have been removed and steps will be taken so that such irregularities do not recur. To ensure this Deputy Commissioners of the 12 zones of MCD have been instructed to send details of pensioners to the Delhi Government's Social Welfare Department regularly.”
The civic body is also planning to take steps to verify authenticity of the pensioners and prepare a software which could help check duplicate payments.
In view of the probe, the MCD had also stopped payment of pension for the last seven months to all 1.90 lakh senior citizens, physically challenged persons and widows receiving the benefit. The opposition Congress in the MCD had recently organised a sit-in at the civic body headquarters to demand release of pension to them.
The beneficiaries of the MCD pension scheme are selected following recommendation by the area councillor. The civic body had in its 2010-11 budget increased the pension amount for senior citizens, widows and the physically challenged from Rs.500 to Rs.1,000 per month.
Keywords: Municipal Administration