31 Lakh SPARSH pensioners are getting pension smoothly from PCDA directly to their bank account every month. Approx 50 thouasnds New Pension cases is processed and sanctioned every year through the new system SPARSH. In other hand, a large number of SPARSH pensioners are facing problem due to in accessibility to the data update feature. Recently, the Defence Accounts Department has issued an instruction to all SPARSH Service center to review function of 195 Defence Accounts Service Centre throughout the country.
CONTROLLER GENERAL OF DEFENCE ACCOUNTS
Ulan Batar Road, Palam, Delhi Cantt.- 110010,
Phone: 011-25665725 email: email@example.com
File No. PENS-570203/4/2023 Dated: 31/01/2024
Sub. : Review of functioning of 195 DAD Service Centres
With the rollout of SPARSH, 195 SPARSH Service Centres have been opened under the administrative control of Regional PCDA / CDAs. The centres are providing various services to the pensioners. The role of SPARSH Service Centres is very crucial in the present digital environment.
2. It is opined by the Competent Authority that all the Service Centres should be aware about their mandate and the kind of facilities which should be available with them. In order to streamline the functioning of these centres, following standard guidelines / templates are circulated for compliance. Respective Principal Controllers / Controllers would ensure that the centres are operational as per these guidelines. Action taken in this regard may be confirmed, centre wise, for perusal of the Competent Authority.
(a) Services to be provided / Mandate:
It may be noted that with a view to provide better services to the Defence pensioners, DAD SPARSH Service Centre has been considered to be the best agency with domain knowledge of pension. As of now, 195 such Centres have been pressed into service by the department, which need to be reviewed regularly to ensure augmentation of facilities.
Services to be availed through SPARSH Service Centres have been defined in Annexure-A. These are indicative only and with the further evolution of SPARSH, more services may be added.
The activities / jobs of the officers and staff including MTS are defined in Annexure-B. The description is indicative and Head of the Centre may ensure that minimum functional activities as are necessary are carried out by the staff.
The SPARSH Pensioner Service request Form has also been defined and enclosed as Annexure-C. The format is for guidance purpose and may be modified as per the evolution of the services.
It may be recalled that this HQrs has been emphasizing to ensure availability of infrastructure facilities at SPARSH Service Centres. The illustrative list of minimum infrastructure to be ensured at the Service Centre is listed in Annexure-D.
The Principal Controller / Controller / HOO under whose administrative jurisdiction the centre may fall, shall have a Pension Coordination Cell under the Administration wing so as to ensure that the infrastructure facilities required for the smooth functioning of the centre are provided. The advance age of the pensioners and the need for maintenance of basic hygiene and cleanliness in the premises of the Service Centre shall be taken note of.
The centre may be opened at locations where regular movement of pensioners is noticed. Opening of Service Centres at ECHS Centre, CSD Canteen Facilities, DGR, ZSB, Municipal Corporation / District Collectorate, etc. can therefore be explored in consultation with respective authorities.
Wherever felt necessary the premise may be hired. The option of provision of infrastructure facilities by the executive authorities may also be explored.
Administrative Controller shall look into aspects of Imprest, postage, rent & allied charges, stationery, hardware items, pay & allowances, leave sanctioning and other administrative and technical controls at their level as per extant orders on the subject.
(C) Training :
It is imperative that suitable training is provided to staff and officers. The training should make them proficient in handling all type of queries related to pension and also the functioning of SPARSH software.
Respective Controllers may coordinate with DPTI, Prayagraj and ensure that the staff and officers are trained in suitable batches, without disrupting the functioning of active centres.
Since the MTS have been tasked with coordinating with the old pensioners they should be proficient enough to understand the basic queries of pensioners and help them fill up the request form.
The manpower requirements should be based on the number of pensioners in the district and its adjoining districts. A template to this effect as per the number of pensioners is suggested below:
Table 1 – Proposed scale for manning of SPARSH Service Centres :
|Type of SPARSH Service Centre(Population of ESM)
|No of SAO / AAOs
|No of SA/Aud/Clk
|Type I (2000 to 10000)
|Type II (10000 to 20000)
|Type III > 20000
(D) Publicity and Display:
The Administrative Controllers shall give wide publicity to the Centre in the geographical area which would be catered by the service centre. They may coordinate with the local administrative machinery of the Central / State Government and ensure regular and sustained dissemination of information about the centre. SMS, FM Radio, local TV, Local Newspaper and other social and electronic media can be used effectively to publicise about the service centre. The address and location map of the Centre may be publicized using these mediums.
The SPARSH Service centre via a Sign Board (format enclosed) at the entrance of the SPARSH Service Centre should clearly and prominently display the services offered in local language, Hindi and English. Please ensure that the uniform fonts,size and colour are used at all the centres for recall value. The timings of the Centre would be 9.30 AM to 6.00 PM. The centre would be opened from Monday to Friday.
The centre should also display the name, designation and contact number details of the officers and staff posted in the service centre. The address and location of the centre should also be prominently displayed so that it is easy for old age pensioners to navigate, find and locate. Any changes in the same may be immediately reflected in the display.
In addition, the HQrs and PCDA (P) Prayagraj should also be intimated so that necessary changes are carried out in the MIS data on SPARSH as well as SPARSH Service Centre Locater on the SPARSH website.
(E) Role of Pension Cell in Controllers’ Office
Suitable MIS Reports and clear cut Escalation Matrix for grievance/ complaints management shall be ensured. A regular reporting structure shall be defined wherein real time Weekly/Monthly/Quarterly/Yearly Reports addressed to CDA/PCDA (Pension)/ CGDA HQrs shall suitably be rendered.
All the Reports & Returns will be furnished only through e-mail.
(F) SPARSH Service Centres – Review Mechanism
A quarterly review meeting on the functioning of the SPARSH Service Centres will be held by the PCDA/CDA either in person or through Video Conferencing. Pension Coordination Cell under the Administration Wing of the Main Office will coordinate the meeting. Further, a standard feedback mechanism be developed in every SPARSH Centre to record the satisfaction or otherwise for every footfall.
CGDA HQrs will carry out the six monthly review on the functioning of the SPARSH Service Centres on a PAN India basis through VC mode.
Controllers are requested to review the functioning of their Service Centres and forward Centre-wise report regarding manpower posted, infrastructural status, training, publicity and other activities deemed fit in respect of the SPARSH Service Centres.
This issues with the approval of Jt. CGDA(Pension).
Sr. AO (AT-V)
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