R.C. GUPTA & ORS. ETC. ETC. Vs. REGIONAL PROVIDENT FUND COMMISSIONER EMPLOYEES PROVIDENT FUND ORGANISATION & ORS ETC.
SUPREME COURT OF INDIA
R.C. Gupta And Ors. Etc. Etc.
Regional Provident Fund Commissioner Employees Provident Fund Organisation And Ors Etc.
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RANJAN GOGOI,J. -
(1.) Leave granted.
(2.) The challenge in these appeals is to an order passed by the Division Bench of the Himachal Pradesh High Court reversing the order of the learned Single Judge by which the learned Single Judge had directed that the appellant-employees would be entitled to the benefit of deposit of 8.33% of their actual salary in the Pension Fund irrespective of the ceiling limit. The aforesaid percentage i.e. 8.33% is out of the total of 12%, which constitutes the employer's share under the Employees' Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act, 1952 (hereinafter referred to as "the 1952 Act").
(3.) The facts lie within a short compass. Under the 1952 Act, 10% or 12% of the basic wages including dearness allowance etc. is required to be deposited in the Provident Fund Account of an employee being the employer's share. The Act as enacted in the year 1952 did not contain any provision for pension. Sub-section 6A with which we are concerned, was inserted by an amendment w.e.f. 16.11.1995 providing for the Employees' Pension Scheme to be framed for payment of pension to retiring employees. The corpus of the pension fund was to be inter alia constituted by deposit of 8.33% of the employer's contribution under Section 6 of the Act. The Pension Scheme which was framed to give effect to the provisions of Section 6A contains inter alia Clause 11, which deals with determination of pensionable salary. Under Clause 11(3) of the Pension Scheme, the maximum pensionable salary was limited to Rs.5,000/-, which was subsequently enhanced to Rs.6,500/- per month w.e.f. 08.10.2001. A couple of months after the Pension Scheme was framed w.e.f. 16.11.1995, a proviso was added to Clause 11(3) w.e.f. 16.03.1996 permitting an option to the employer and an employee for contribution on salary exceeding Rs.5,000/- or Rs.6,500/- (w.e.f. 08.10.2001) per month. 8.33% of such contribution on full salary was required to be remitted to the Pension Fund.;
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