Joint bank account is not mandatory for spouse pension, the government said on Saturday. Union Minister of State for Personnel, Public Grievances and Pensions Jitendra Singh said the Narendra Modi government has always sought "ease of living" for all sections of society including retirees and pensioners who are the nation's assets with all their experience and long years of service rendered by them.
He said in case the head of office is satisfied that it is not possible for the retiring government servant to open a joint account with his or her spouse for reasons beyond his or her control, this requirement may be relaxed, an official statement said.
All banks disbursing central government pension have been advised that in case the spouse (family pensioner) opts for the existing joint bank account for credit of family pension, banks should not insist on opening a new account, it said.
A joint bank account with spouse is however desirable and it is to be opened with their spouse in whose favor an authorisation for family pension exists in the Pension Payment Order (PPO), said the statement issued by the Personnel Ministry.
Operation in these accounts would be on "former or survivor" or "either or survivor" basis as desired by the pensioner, Singh said. The reason for opening of joint bank account is to ensure that family pension may be commenced without any delay and the family pensioner is not subjected to any hardships for opening of a new pension bank account, the statement said.
This also ensures minimum documentation for the family pensioner while submitting request for commencement of family pension, it said.