People’s Bank has made history by becoming the first state bank to accept fingerprints of pensioners for verification purposes, in lieu of the conventional life certificate.
The official launch ceremony of this product was held at the People’s Bank Head Office under the patronage of chief guests former Auditor General – S. Swarnajothi and veteran musician – Edward Jayakody, Director General of Pensions – A. Jagath D. Dias, Additional Director General – K. A. Pathmapriya, People’s Bank Chairman – Sujeewa Rajapakse, Chief Executive Officer / General Manager – Ranjith Kodituwakku together with People’s Bank Corporate and Executive Management and officials of the Pension Department.
In keeping with the “Vistas of Prosperity and Splendour” manifesto of the government which aims to utilize technology to enhance the efficiency and output of the state sector, the Department of Pensions recently introduced a facility that enables pensioners to use their fingerprint as verification instead of the time consuming process of obtaining and submitting a life certificate to the department, the bank said in a media release.
Accordingly, with this new facility any of the nearly 650,000 pensioners in the country, irrespective of whether they are a People’s Bank customer or not, can walk into any of the selected People’s Bank branches and conveniently provide their fingerprint on a specialised electronic device.
The fingerprint is accepted as equivalent to the submission of the life certificate and is instantly updated in the Department of Pensions records. The facility is initially available at 75 People’s Bank branches across the island and will be subsequently expanded to other branches in the future.
The new technology-driven process using the fingerprint is a welcome relief to all pensioners as they will be able to attend to this verification matter conveniently by making a quick visit to a People’s Bank branch.
The obtaining of the life certificate by the pensioner is annual occurrence and plays an important role in the Department of Pensions’ efforts to regulate the process of pension payments.
All pensioners are expected to obtain this life certificate through a tedious process that involves their respective Grama Niladhari Officer and Divisional Secretariat. Initially, all pensioners are mailed applications for the Pensioner Life Certificate during a particular time period of the year.
This application has to be duly completed by the pensioner, certified by the Grama Niladhari and sent to the Divisional Secretariat. The main objective of this process is to verify the pensioner’s details and avoid overpayments, the release said.
Pensioners can call People’s Bank on 1961 or visit http://www.peoplesbank.lk or the People’s Bank branches currently offering this fingerprint verification facility.