Thursday, December 30, 2010

Less than 5% eligible for EPF Pension- I wonder why :)

Yesterday's newspaper had an article on Employee Providend Fund(EPF). As per the statistics, less than 5% complete 10 years needed for pension. The pension scheme really irritates me based on my experience. I may be wrong about it but I cannot even find relevant information.

It is silly that the government is encouraging people to join the New Pension Scheme(NPS) but there does not appear to be an option to opt out of EPF and join NPS instead. I suppose if the government allows that what will it do with the EPF organisation!

The reason mentioned for the small fraction of people eligible is that people change jobs and withdraw their savings. For the life of me, I cannot understand why after so many years, the EPF organisation cannot have a single account for an individual regardless of the organisation for which he works.

It had taken me over a year to transfer funds from one company to another in the same EPF office! When I was withdrawing funds, I was advised(by the EPF officers) that I should not try to consolidate the small sum in my last job in Delhi area with the larger sum in Goa. I would be struggling to find out what the status of the transfer is. They cannot predict the time it may take.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Joining the herd!

I loved the play "Rhinocerous" by Ionesco. The theme is similar to the old folk tale I recall from my childhood. A man accidentally cuts his nose and tells his neighbours that he can now see god. Pretty soon everyone in the village cuts his nose.

I decided to become more active on facebook so that I am a bit more aware of what is happening to friends and relations. Personalized communication including even email seems to be dead :(

I dread the day that I may also use twitter

Real estate agents robbed of 8.5 million in cash

I read a news item yesterday. A pair of real estate agents were robbed at gun point and Rs. 8.5 million was stolen. The newspaper report stated blandly that the duo was making a down payment for a property deal. Why on earth were they paying so much in cash!

The politicians make so much fuss about money parked in Swiss banks; yet I do not find them changing rules to make it easier not to have cash dealings in property.

I would start by allowing asymmetric reporting. The buyer may want to pay in black. The seller may not want to have black. Let the seller report the additional income from the property sale and let it be treated as taxable income.

We are becoming a mobile society - job changing is common. We may shift across cities or areas within the same city. It should be easy to buy and sell property. The transaction cost for transfer of property needs to come down. Why not model the transfer costs on VAT. The tax should be payable only the net gain in property value. So, if I buy today and sell tomorrow at the same price, I do not lose 6 to 10% in taxes only.

Talking it out

The best way of getting rid of aggravation is to talk it out. Boring friends and relations needs to be avoided. So, why not talk to myself!

I was a little disappointed that others also had the same idea - and before me. So, I had to pick a url which seems egotistical.

I recall a Ziggy cartoon from my college days - It is bad enough that I talk to myself. But sometimes I don't pay attention and have to repeat myself!

I expect that I will often repeat myself as the reasons for my frustration do not change.