KERALA

LIC agents to float national outfit

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM Dec. 7. The Life Insurance Agents' Association here is holding a two-day national conference in the city on December 19 and 20 as a precursor to floating an all India organisation to take up job-related problems of the field workforce with the LIC management.

Addressing a press conference, the association general convener, S. S. Potti, said an estimated 1,000 delegates from all over the country would take part in the conference to enable the formation of the All India Insurance Agents' Association.

The all India general secretary of the CITU, M. K. Pandhe, will formally inaugurate the conference,

According to the association, the lack of an organised outfit at the national level was impeding redressal of grievances of an estimated 10.5 lakh LIC agents who formed the backbone of the insurance firm.

Mr. Potti said besides the contribution of the minuscule number of high-performing LIC agents, it was the collective effort of several hundreds of agents working across towns and villages that enabled the LIC to issue 4.77 crore policies over the past two years grossing a turnover of Rs. 80 crores. The LIC had also been able to maintain a dominant hold (97 per cent) in the insurance market in spite of entry of at least 12 big players, including multinationals, into the field.

However, he pointed out that, there was at present no representation for the vast majority of agents to discuss issues relating to new schemes launched by the LIC management.

For instance, some of the new schemes such as the one on lapsing amounted to slashing of benefits to the agents. According to the new regulation, agents would have reduced margins if policy-holders defaulted on their premium payments.

Schemes like bank assurance, broker system, corporate agencies and cooperative agency had heightened job concerns and insecurities of the unorganised sector of insurance agents, he said.

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