Government has asked all pensioners to complete Annual Identification by next week. In an official statement issued by the Ministry of Defence, it has requested all defence pensioners who have not completed their annual identification/life certificate so far to do it by May 25, 2022. Once that process is completed, the process of their monthly pension will take off smoothly. The data received until May 17 indicates that still more than 43, 774 pensioners have not completed their Annual Identification process. These are those pensioners according to the MoD statement who have been migrated to System for Pension Administration – Rakshasa (SPARSH), and they have not completed their annual identification, through their respective banks or online by November 2021.
According to a pensioner, the majority of those who have not been able to complete their identification through any means are the ones who are living in remote areas. For those who continue to be on the old system of pension – legacy pensioners (pre-2016 retirees) almost 1.2 lakh pensioners have not completed their annual identification.
Why is Annual Identification/Life Certification important?
For timely credit of a monthly pension, this process is very critical – as this is a life certificate indicating that the pensioner is alive and each year they are required to submit this.
The government has however given a one time waiver for this process and monthly pension was credited to58,275 Pensioners (out of 4.47 lakh Migrated Pensioners on SPARSH).
When did the pension glitch start?
The government shifted to a new online pension disbursing system which is controlled by the Allahabad-based Principal Controller of Defence Accounts (Pensions), or PCDA-P. This process was started to help deal with different aspects of pensions like — computation, revision, initiation, sanction and disbursement.
Even though the pensioners would have submitted their certification last year after migrating to SPARSH, in March this year they were supposed to submit again. According to reports in the public domain, several thousand had not submitted their certification. However, reports quoting pensioners indicate that not all were aware that the certifications had to be re-submitted.
“The transition to the new system seems to have created this problem and left the veterans feeling harassed,” said a veteran. There are almost 3.3 million defence pensioners, and almost 500,000 would have moved to the new system and migration would be completed by year end.
Earlier this year, due to glitches in SPARSH hundreds of former servicemen did not get their dearness relief with their January 2022 pension.
How can the Annual Identification/Life Certification be done?
All the pensioners have been directed to get their identification/certification done through the Digital Jeevan Pramaan online and there is a special app for Android users Jeevan Pramaan Face App.
They can also look for details on how to install and use the app – jeevanpramaan.gov.in/package/documentdowload/JeevanPramaan_FaceApp_3.6_Installation
Those who are on SPARSH, have been advised to choose Sanctioning Authority as “Defence – PCDA (P) Allahabad” & Disbursing Authority as “SPARSH – PCDA (Pensions) Allahabad
For Legacy Pensioner (pre-2016 Retiree)
They should click on their respectiveSanctioning Authority as “Defence – Jt. CDA (AF) Subroto Park” or Defence – PCDA (P) Allahabad” or “Defence – PCDA (Navy) Mumbai & Disbursing Authority as their respective pension disbursing bank/DPDO etc.
For the completion of their Annual Identification, the statement goes on to suggest that the pensioners may also visit Common Service Centres (CSCs) which can be located at: findmycsc.nic.in/
For the update of Life Certification, they can visit their nearest DPDO and can also continue updating through their respective banks.