Members of the LIC Agents Organisation of India, south zone, on Wednesday staged a demonstration in front of the LIC divisional office here pressing various demands including seeking the withdrawal of Insurance Bills.

The agitating members called for ensuring the welfare of LIC agents through legislation besides refraining from introducing direct selling of policies. They also called for deducting income tax from the commission above the exemption limit besides withdrawing the premium-based continuance.

The protestors were up in arms against the recommendations of the six-member Devendra Swaroop Committee which suggested stopping payment of the agent commission fees by 2011.

The committee included officials from the ministries of finance and corporate affairs, the Reserve Bank of India, Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority (IRDA) and Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI).

The committee had said that the upfront commissions embedded in the premium paid be reduced to no more than 15 per cent of the premium immediately from the current 16.25 per cent. In 2010, this should be brought down to 7 per cent and a zero-commission structure should be in place by April 2011.

B. Vickraman, Madurai district secretary, Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), S. Prabhakaran Sathyaseelan, divisional president, LIC Agents' Organisation of India (LICAOI), R. Karunakaran, its all India working committee member, G. Karuppiah, south zone treasurer, P. Rajendran, divisional secretary, K. Paneerselvam, treasurer, M. Selvaraj, south zone secretary, S. Maria William, divisional president, National Federation of Insurance Field Workers of India (NFIFWI), addressed the gathering.