THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Cooperative Department has started mapping the Primary Agricultural Cooperative Societies (PACS) as part of entrusting them with the disbursal of pension to over 38,000 KSRTC pensioners for the next six months. The efforts to identify the beneficiaries under each designated PACS will also be completed soon.Sources with the Cooperative Department said 12,000 of the 38,000 KSRTC pensioners belong to Thiruvananthapuram district. Wayanad has the lowest number - around 500 pensioners.
Meanwhile, apprehensions exist about the feasibility of disbursing pension directly at the pensioner’s house. A Cooperative Department source, on condition of anonymity, said they had already raised doubts about the feasibility of direct payment at the pensioner’s house, especially in districts like Wayanad.
The fact that PACS cannot provide the services of nationalised and scheduled banks to the pensioners is among the reasons behind the move to disburse pension at their doorstep.
However, the pensioners may need to open an account with district cooperative banks to get the services as in the nationalised and scheduled banks. “Once the account is opened with DCBs, they could also make use of the ATM facility using DCB’s Rupay card as DCBs are the financing banks for PACS. Using the RTGS system, PACS could transfer the fund to DCBs,” a source said. All pensioners may not necessarily be residing in their home districts. Some may even be residing outside the state. In such cases, it will not be feasible to disburse the pension even through PACS, sources said.
But the Cooperative Department has assessed that DCB and PACS together need only Rs 584 crore to meet the pension commitments of KSRTC for the next six months. The designated 245 PACS will have to pay Rs 2.38 crore on an average to meet the monthly pension commitments worth Rs 60 crore, besides arrears worth Rs 284 crore. As per the government scheme, it will repay Rs 605.70 crore, including the interest at 10 per cent. As long as the government guaranty to repay the loan with 10 per cent interest exists, it will not be a problem for PACS and DCBs to pump in the funds. Moreover, what had been chalked out was a temporary arrangement for six months, sources pointed out.