Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Govt. to launch insurance scheme for blue-collar overseas workers in Gulf

The government of India has decided to launch an insurance scheme for blue-collar expatriate workers residing in the Gulf countries. The Mahatma Gandhi Pravasi Suraksha Yojana (MGPSY), which aims at providing insurance and financial protection up to 6 lac expatriate workers, will be formally launched on Monday by the Minister of Overseas Indian affairs, Mr. Vayalar Ravi. Around 65% of Indian workers in the UAE are blue collar workers.

Through MGPSY, the government is trying to encourage Indian overseas workers to build up savings that they can be used for their resettlement on their return to India. The scheme would also contribute to their pension and provide a life insurance cover against natural death during the insurance period.

Blue-collar expatriate workers in the Gulf countries aged between 18 to 50 years and who have Emigration Check Required status stamped on their passport, and have migrated on employment or contract visa, are eligible to enrol in the scheme. They would need to open a Non-Resident External account that allows Non-Resident Indians to remit funds in any permitted foreign currency, which is converted to Indian rupees and credited to their account. The participant's contribution will be automatically deducted from this account and credited to the scheme.

The government of India, through the scheme will contribute Rs. 1,000 per year for every saving of Rs. 5,000 to Rs. 12,000 by each subscriber. While, in case of women subscribers, the benefit will be double for the same amount of savings. An additional contribution of Rs. 900 will be made for the subscriber account for saving Rs 4,000 or more annually towards a return and resettlement fund.

Govt. directed insurers to settle RSBY claims within a month

Concerned over delay in settlement of RSBY claims, the Ministry of Labour and Employment, Government of India has issued a circular to insurance companies directing them to settle all claims under Rashtriya Swasthya Bima Yojana (RSBY) within a month.

“It has been observed that claims for even the period 2009-10 have not been settled by the insurance companies or have been rejected without giving any sound reasons", said the circular.

The direction came after the ministry received complaints from the government over delay in claims settlement by insurers and Third Party Administrators (TPAs).

RSBY is a health insurance project for 'Below Poverty Line (BPL)' families under the Ministry of Labour and Employment. It provides cashless insurance for hospitalisation in public as well private hospitals.

LIC to offer electronic policies from January' 14

Country's largest insurance company, the Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India has announced that it would be able to offer policies in electronic format from January next year. According to an official, the state-run insurer expects to tie-up with insurance repositories in the next two months.

According to the IRDA guidelines for insurance repositories, tie-up with insurance repositories is mandatory for a certain class of products and we have to be compliant, said Mr. S.K. Roy, Chairman of LIC, adding, “We are examining the matter and I expect it to be finalised in the next couple of months."

Having an electronic account with a repository, policyholder will be able to keep his life insurance policies such as term insurance, pension plan, child plan etc. in electronic form. The benefit of keeping policies in electronic account is that there is no risk of losing the traditional paper documents. Moreover, it'll facilitate policyholder to pay his premiums online and renew policies through the relevant repository's website.

The sector regulator has recently provided insurance repository licence to five companies i.e. - Central Insurance Repository Limited, NSDL Database Management Limited, Karvy Insurance Repository Limited, CAMS Repository Services Limited and SHCIL Projects Limited.

“It is a game changing intervention by the regulator which has huge implications," Mr. Roy said.

Friday, October 25, 2013

Maha govt. to provide life insurance cover to tribal students.

 The Maharashtra state government has decided to insure life of tribal students enrolled at the department's schools and ashramshalas.

Speaking to reporters in Nashik, the tribal development minister Mr. Madhukar Pichad said that the insurance scheme will provide coverage of death due to snakebite, food poisoning, or any other accident. This insurance scheme is the first in its kind in the state. The compensation amount has yet to be decided. The tribal development department will soon decide the sum.

The premiums would be paid by the state government, Mr. Pichad said.
In addition, the minister also said that he would be checking quality control issues when a building was being handed over to the department.

“Since, the tribal development department does not have a construction wing of its own; it has to rely on the Public Works Department (PWD). It has now been decided to conduct quality checks of all establishments that will be handed over to the tribal department, before they are inhabited,“ he added further.

It's unfortunate that only a very small fraction of developmental plans are spent on tribal welfare, Mr. Pichad said adding, “We have decided to closely monitor the expenses set out to district collectorates for tribal development every month."