Reported by Chinmaya Dehury/Edited by Swetaparna Mohanty
Bhubaneswar, Aug 7
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik is leaving no stone unturned at the fag-end of his term to ensure electoral success in the elections due in the next few months. On top of a slew of sops already announced by the Chief Minister in the last couple of days, the Odisha government today announced an additional 2.7 lakh beneficiaries under the Madhubabu Pension Yojana.
The pensions are aimed at providing social security in rural areas with a special focus on destitutes, widows and the differently abled. Out of the additional pensions announced, 200 will be kept reserved in each block to cover destitute persons while a special drive will be taken up to cover widows and differently abled, official sources said.
The identification of the new beneficiaries by Gram Panchayats will be completed by the end of September.
The new pensions to be given from October will entail an additional recurring burden of Rs 100 crores on the State exchequer every month. The State is already spending Rs 629 crores on this account.
Earlier, the State government had launched a special drive in urban areas covering about one lakh persons under the scheme.
With today’s announcement the total number of beneficiaries under the scheme will turn out to be about 20 lakh in the State.