The Union Cabinet, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, has given its approval for Atmanirbhar Bharat Rojgar Yojana (ABRY) to boost employment in formal sector and incentivise creation of new employment opportunities during the COVID-19 recovery phase under Atmanirbhar Bharat Package 3.0. ABRY scheme will entail expenditure of ₹22,810 crore.
As per the scheme, Government of India will provide subsidy for two years in respect of new employees engaged on or after October 1, 2020 and upto June 30, 2021. Further, the government will pay both 12 per cent employees’ contribution and 12 per cent employers’ contribution i.e. 24 per cent of wages towards EPF in respect of new employees in establishments employing upto 1,000 employees for two years.
In respect of new employees in establishments employing more than 1,000 employees, the government will pay only employees’ share of EPF contribution i.e. 12 per cent of wages for two years.
An employee drawing monthly wage of less than ₹15,000 who was not working in any establishment registered with the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) before October 1, 2020 and did not have a Universal Account Number (UAN) or EPF Member account number prior to October 1, 2020 will be eligible for the benefit.
Any EPF member possessing UAN drawing monthly wage of less than ₹15,000 who made exit from employment during COVID-19 pandemic from March 1, 2020 to September 30, 2020 and did not join employment in any EPF covered establishment up to September 30, 2020 will also be eligible to avail benefit.
EPFO will credit the contribution in Aadhaar seeded account of members in electronic manner, an official statement said. For ABRY, EPFO shall develop a software and also develop a procedure which is transparent and accountable at its end.
EPFO shall also work out modality to ensure that there is no overlapping of benefits provided under ABRY with any other scheme implemented by EPFO.
For the current financial year 2020-21, Cabinet has approved an expenditure of ₹1,584 crore, while the total expenditure approved for the entire scheme period, i.e. 2020-23 is ₹22,810 crore.
“The scheme is beneficial to Tiruppur exporting units, as these units are now providing employment to new employees due to improvement in exports since June 2020,” said Tiruppur Exporters Association (TEA) president Raja M Shanmugham.