The Delhi High Court on Friday dismissed a PIL which claimed that the Employees’ Provident Funds and Miscellaneous Provisions Act of 1952 and the schemes framed under it were not being followed while enrolling members.

A Bench of Chief Justice D.N. Patel and Justice Prateek Jalan declined to entertain the plea, which had alleged that ineligible persons were being enrolled as members in the EPF schemes resulting in “major losses” to the Central government and the Employees’ Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO).

The petitioner, an Accounts officer in EPFO, said that certain employees contributing to the provident fund and availing income tax benefits withdraw money from their PF accounts on grounds of illness as no document is necessary for such advances and when they leave the service, the balance in their account is “so meagre” that there is no tax liability.

“This also results in huge loss of government revenue by evading Income Tax provisions,” the petition by Shovan Patra had alleged.

The plea had also alleged that “in order to save tax and other benefits, employers enrol their old relatives or even themselves as PF members on full pay though they are not eligible for PF membership.

“As there is no age limit for enrolment under PF, they keep on contributing to the fund till their death and are able to get tax-free benefits under EPF schemes and also additional Employees Deposit Linked Insurance scheme of ₹6 lakh,” it said.

The petition had sought directions to the Centre to modify the existing EPFO software, in accordance with the provisions of the 1952 Act and the schemes framed thereunder, “so that only eligible employees of the covered establishments may be enrolled as members”.

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