ESIC scam: Scores illegally availed maternity leave benefits

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New Delhi, May 29 (IANS) A Pandora’s Box seems to have opened in the infamous maternity leave scam unravelling at the Employees State Insurance Corp (ESIC) regional office in Faridabad’s Sector 16 in Haryana.

An ongoing investigation reveals that scores, not dozens, of women employees of private sector companies linked to the Corporation availed insurance and other Maternity Leave benefits, no less than four times a year, and in some cases even more, by declaring fake deliveries.

This was done by submitting forged medical reports in connivance with contractors and departmental officers at the ESIC.

Maternity Leave is paid holiday of 26 weeks.

The preliminary probe in the scam was launched after an internal audit of the ESIC revealed a dozen such cases in a year. The case, unearthed by IANS last week, is being probed by the Vigilance Department at the ESIC Headquarters in Delhi.

Following the new revelation, the scope of the inquiry has been expanded from three years to cover the past six years.

Top sources in the Union Ministry of Labour and Employment said the benefits could have been exploited in other regions of the country as well and to expose that the scope of the probe had been widened.

The sources said so far six employees and three officials have been suspended and a task force had been set up to probe the scam.

–IANS

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