The central government has directed all banks responsible for disbursing pensions to assign doorstep representatives who can assist bedridden and hospitalized pensioners in submitting their life certificates, reported PTI.
Furthermore, the Department of Pension and Pensioners' Welfare (DoPPW) has issued an order instructing all banks to promote awareness regarding the convenience of obtaining digital life certificates through face authentication technology among super senior pensioners, specifically those aged 80 and above.
Every year, all pensioners must provide a life certificate as proof of their continued existence to continue receiving their pensions. Currently, there are approximately 69.76 lakh central government pensioners.
According to the order dated September 25, with the introduction of digital life certificates (DLCs) utilizing face authentication technology, it is now feasible for every citizen to submit a DLC. This can be done either from the comfort of their home using an Android smartphone or by visiting a bank branch. The order explicitly stated, “It is suggested that all banks may utilise the various platforms for creating awareness of the convenience of obtaining a life certificate by using the face authentication technology.”
As per the directive, banks have the authority to streamline the process of life certificate submission by assigning doorstep banking representatives. Additionally, they can promote the method for submitting DLC by prominently displaying informational posters at their branches and ATMs.
As per the order, banks are authorized to transmit SMS, emails, or WhatsApp messages to pensioners, containing a link to the Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for face authentication. This will empower super senior pensioners to independently submit their life certificates through face authentication technology using their Android smartphones.
The DoPPW has additionally instructed banks to distribute the SOP on Digital Life Certificates (DLC) through face authentication via email to their respective officials. This step will facilitate their familiarity with the utilization of this technology.
“Necessary instructions may be issued to all the bank branches to make suitable arrangements for submission of life certificates by the super senior pensioners/family pensioners aged 80 and above from October 01 of every year,” added the order.
In 2019, the government directed banks to permit senior pensioners aged 80 and above to submit their life certificates annually starting from October 1, as opposed to the previous requirement of November. Meanwhile, pensioners below the age of 80 are still required to provide their life certificates in November.