WHY IN NEWS?
- Ministry of Defence has implemented SPARSH (System for Pension Administration Raksha), an integrated system for automation of sanction and disbursement of defence pension.
- This web-based system processes pension claims and credits pension directly into the bank accounts of defence pensioners without relying on any external intermediary.
- A Pensioner Portal is available for pensioners to view their pension-related information, access services and register complaints for redressal of grievances, if any, relating to their pension matters.
- SPARSH envisages the establishment of Service Centres to provide last-mile connectivity to pensioners who may be unable to directly access the SPARSH portal for any reason.
- In addition to several offices of the Defence Accounts Department, which are already functioning as Service Centres for pensioners, the two largest banks dealing with defence pensioners – State Bank of India (SBI) and Punjab National Bank (PNB) – have been co-opted as Service Centres.
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