NEW DELHI: More than 8 lakh subscribers of the EPFO (Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation) were added during the first quarter of the current financial year 2020-21.
According to the provisional payroll data published by the EPFO, the subscriber base of EPFO increased by around 8.47 lakh members during the first quarter. Though the Covid-19 pandemic outbreak had adversely affected the enrolments in April and May, 0.20 lakh and 1.72 lakh net new subscribers were added to social security schemes of EPFO in these two months. However, June saw speedy recovery with addition of 6.55 lakh net subscribers, registering a remarkable 280% month-on-month growth. This is to be noted that the EPFO manages social security funds of workers in the organised /semi-organised sector in India and has more than 6 crore active members. The EPFO data published comprises all the new members who have joined during the month and whose contribution is received. The subscriber base growth, said an official, is on account of increased number of new subscribers, lower exits and higher rejoining by exited members.
According to the EPFO, new subscribers joining has increased roughly by 64% from 3.03 lakh in May to 4.98 lakh in June. In addition, the exits from the EPFO subscriber base declined by nearly 33% from 4.45 lakh in May to 2.96 lakh in June. The number of members who exited and then rejoined, indicates switching of jobs by subscribers within the establishments covered by EPFO, he said. This has also increased by about 44% for June, over May, with more subscribers choosing to retain membership by transferring funds rather than opting for final settlement. Interestingly, new enrolment of female workers has improved from 37,085 in April to 106,059 in June in absolute terms, though the overall female participation in the workforce remains low. Category-wise analysis of industry indicates that the “Expert Services” category had a share of about 46% and 45% during 2018-19 and 2019-20 respectively. But, in the first quarter of 2020-21, it stands at 52.7% which reflects that many industries are yet to recover, but “Expert Services” has made good progress. The absolute figure for net enrolment in “Expert Services” category during June 2020 is 3.45 lakh, which is more than the monthly average of 3 lakh during 2019-20. “Expert Services” predominantly consist of manpower agencies, private security agencies and small contractors.