New Delhi: Over 5 crore members of the Employees' Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO) will have to wait for a few months to be able to use the online PF withdrawal facility as the retirement fund body wants the system to be "fool proof".
After the launch of this facility, subscribers will be able to apply online for withdrawal of the provident fund which will be transferred directly to their bank accounts.
At present, the subscribers who wish to settle their accounts with EPFO are required to apply manually for withdrawing PF.
"We are working on it. But before launching it, we want it to be fool proof. We want a robust system as the funds would go out of EPFO hands unlike in online PF transfer claims where money is transferred from one account to another PF account," said a senior official.
"For settling the PF account online, the accounts need to be verified online using Aadhaar database. Therefore, Aadhaar number seeding with the PF account is a prerequisite. All PF accounts are not seeded with Aadhaar so far," he said.
According to the information available, EPFO has not only become the registrar of Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) for enrolment, but it is also an online authentication user agency of the authority.
That means that EPFO can verify the credentials of an applicant by using the Aadhaar database. But for that purpose seeding of Aadhaar number with the PF account is required. EPFO had issued over four crore portable Universal Account
As per the data available on the EPFO website, the body has issued 4.37 crore UANs and 52.26 lakh account holders have provided their Aadhaar numbers for seeding with their portable PF account.
The official said that it is not mandatory for subscribers to submit their Aadhaar numbers but it would be required for high value online transaction like withdrawals where money would go out of EPFO.
He said that EPFO is creating awareness about the benefits of having the Aadhaar number and providing assistance to its subscribers to enrol under the project by organisation camps from time to time.
At present, EPFO subscribers are using a host of online facilities like transfer of PF and accessing accounts. However, the official said, it will take some time but online withdrawal facility would be a reality in near future.