The number of Atal Pension Yojana subscribers has increased to over 69 lakh with a total contribution of Rs 2,690 crore, a finance ministry statement said today.
Atal Pension Yojana (APY) was introduced in 2015 by the government as a self- contributory savings pension scheme with guaranteed pension of Rs 1,000 to Rs 5,000.
The statement, quoting Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority (PFRDA) Chairman Hemant G Contractor, said there is a need to increase the pension coverage as a large section of the society still does not have access to pensions.
This a cause of concern for the PFRDA as well as the government, he said speaking at a conference here.
Contractor informed the gathering that on an average, a little less than 2 per cent of the eligible population is covered under APY and "hence a lot has to be done to provide people a regular access to old age income".
In a video message, Secretary of Department of Financial Services Rajiv Kumar said the pension coverage in this country is at around 12 per cent and banks and other stakeholders need to work towards greater coverage under the scheme.
He said his department was monitoring the progress under the scheme and stressed targets allocated under the scheme to banks should be accomplished.
While the government has a pension scheme for the BPL persons but the amount is meagre and is not sufficient for old age needs.
Nine per cent of the population (110 million people) are over 60 years and this figure is expected to cross 180 million by 2030, the release said.
"The 60 plus age group is the fastest growing demographic in the country. With increase in longevity of the people, disintegration of the joint family system in India and inflation, there is a greater need for old age than ever before," it said.
With the introduction of e-APY through Aadhaar, the banks will be able to effectively utilise the digital platform for greater coverage, it added.
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