NEW DELHI: Citing increase in lifespan in elderly people, Union Minister Jitendra Singh today emphasised on the need to utilise capabilities of pensioners for various nation building efforts.
Addressing a day-long training programme for representative of different ministries on pension related matters here, he said the Department of Pensions will do an in-depth exercise and find out various workable options.
With an increase in lifespan and the status of health in the elderly also having improved over the last few years, most of the pensioners who retire around the age of 58 or 60 years, are still in the prime of their health, physical as well as mental performance, he said.
"They are, in other words 'retired but not tired. The challenge for the society is how best to utilise the services of this experienced and qualified lot so that their talent and capabilities do not go waste and are not lost to the nation," said Singh, Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions.
He said the government is working on a more organised single window pension system to ensure that a pensioner during the last year of his service does not have to run around to collect 'No Due Certificates' and thus waste his time and energy which he can otherwise devote to the service of the government and the nation.
Singh also referred to a number of other pending issues requiring attention including disparity in implementation of pension benefits of 6th Pay Commission, among others.
The Department of Pensions will devise a mechanism whereby the pensioners will find representation in the government's decision making with regard to their matters, the Minister said.
On the one hand while India is having more than 65 per cent of its population under the age of 35 years and on the other hand the number of elderly population is also on the increase. "A 'Samanvay' (coordination) between these two groups is essential to achieve the goal of 'Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikas'," he said.
There are about 50 lakh central government employees and 56 lakh pensioners.