Life has not been easy for C. Moorthy, who retired from Aavin in 2011. He now works as a helper on construction sites and earns Rs. 250 a day. “The contractor gives me work only for three days in a week. My wife has diabetes and she needs insulin injections. I get a monthly pension of Rs.1,300 from the Employees’ Provident Fund,” said the senior citizen, who still curses the day he joined as a daily wage labourer in the Tamil Nadu Cooperative Milk Producers Federation, which packages ‘Aavin’ milk.
Hundreds of pensioners like Mr. Moorthy get a maximum pension of Rs. 2,200 and a minimum of Rs. 1,000, which is nowhere near their last drawn pay.
The clamour for a change of policy towards pension for Aavin employees has been on for sometime now. The trade unions have been demanding that for every litre of milk sold, at least 10 paise could be kept aside towards creation of this fund. “It will work out to Rs. 10 crore a year,” said a member of a trade union.
The Tamil Nadu Aavin Engineers Association has written to the State government urging it to delink Aavin’s pension from the Employees’ Provident Fund wherein the employer’s contribution was restricted to Rs. 780 a month, said Association State president K. Gopinath.