The government has decided to relax the existing conditions and the amount of relief for workers who have lost employment during the COVID-19 pandemic period. The government has issued a notification dated September 7, 2020, for the extension of the scheme Atal Beemit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana under Employees’ State Insurance Act 1948 for the period 01.07.2020 to 30.06.2021. After December 31, 2020, the scheme will be available with original eligibility condition during the period January 1, 2021, to June 30, 2021.
The ESI Corporation had launched a scheme named ‘Atal Bimit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana’ (ABVKY) which, in case the Insured Person (IP) is rendered unemployed, provides relief to the extent of 25% of the average per day earning during the previous four contribution periods (total earning during the four contribution period/730) to be paid up to maximum 90 days of unemployment once in the lifetime of the IP on submission of claim in form of an Affidavit.
The Scheme has been made effective from 01-07-2018. The scheme was implemented on a pilot basis for a period of two years initially.
The relaxation in following eligibility conditions for availing relief under the scheme during the period 24.03.2020 to 31.12.2020 as under: –
1. The Insured Person should have been in insurable employment for a minimum period of two years immediately before his/ her unemployment and should have contributed for not less than 78 days in the contribution period immediately preceding the unemployment and minimum 78 days in one of the remaining three contribution periods in two years prior to unemployment.
2. Claim shall be due 30 days after date of unemployment.
3. The claim for relief may be submitted by an IP online in the prescribed claim form duly completed, directly to the Branch office. The payment shall be made in the bank account of the IP within 15 days from the receipt of the duly completed claim. Aadhaar shall be used for identification of the Insured Person.
4. Relief to the extent of 50 % of the average per day earning during the previous four contribution periods to be paid up to maximum 90 days of unemployment.
The above relaxed eligibility conditions will be applicable for the period 24.03.2020 to 31.12.2020 only. The other conditions as specified in the original Atal Beemit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana as notified on 04.02.2019 will remain the same.
The Scheme Atal Beemit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana will be available with original eligibility conditions for the IPs who became unemployed on or before 23.03.2020 and on or after 01.01.2021.
Earlier, the ESIC had approved relaxation in eligibility criteria and enhancement in the payment of unemployment benefit under its Atal Bimit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana. Under ESIC’s Atal Bimit Vyakti Kalyna Yojna, unemployment benefit is paid to the workers covered under ESI scheme.
It was announced that the claims for payment of unemployment benefit under its Atal Bimit Vyakti Kalyan Yojana run by the ESIC will be settled within 15 days from the date of an application. The Employees’ State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) board had relaxed norms to double payment of unemployment benefit under the scheme to 50 per cent of average wages of three months to cope with job loss between March 24 and December 31 this year in view of the COVID-19 pandemic.
The claims can be filed after 30 days from unemployment against 90 days earlier. The claims can be filed directly by workers whereas earlier they needed to be routed through employers. The ESIC board’s decision is expected to benefit about 40 lakh industrial workers.