The Central (Civil) pensions are authorized through Central Pension Accounting Office (CPAO) functioning under the Controller General of Accounts. CPAO is administering the 'Scheme for Payment of Pensions to Central Government Civil Pensioners by Authorized Banks (both Public Sector and some Private sector Banks)'.
Its functions include:
- Issue of Special Seal Authorisations (SSAs) for pension payments to Authorised Banks.
- Preparation of budget for the Pension Grant and accounting thereof.
- Reconciliation with and performance review of banks with respect to pension payments and disbursements.
The coverage of the Scheme extends to all pensioners of the Central Government employed in Civil Ministries/Departments (other than Railways, Posts, and Defence), National Capital Territory of Delhi, Union Territory Administrations without legislatures, retired Judges of the High Courts and the Supreme Court and All India Service Officers. This Scheme also covers payment of pension to former Members of Parliament and the payment of pension and other amenities to the former Presidents/Vice Presidents of India.
CPAO was created with the primary objective of simplifying procedure and reducing the number of agencies for pension payment and to expedite the process of authorization, revision and transfer of pension through Authorized Banks.
The working of CPAO is fully computerized and it maintains a databank of Central (Civil) pensioners. Over 1246548 pensioners are provided pension related services by the CPAO through more than 70788 paying bank branches all over the country.