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Odisha Sun Times Bureau
Bhubaneswar, Aug 29:

Barely four days after the launching of the much-delayed Mahaprayan scheme, the Odisha government today exempted poor people from footing the bills for availing the earlier ‘pay and use’ only hearse facility.

Atanu-Sabyasachi-Nayak

People from economically weaker sections of the society will be spared from paying any charge for availing the services to transport dead from the government hospitals to their homes, state Health and Family Welfare Minister Atanu Sabyasachi Nayak informed media today.

The expenses will be met from Chief Minister’s Relief Fund (CMRF), he added.

While launching of the scheme, the government had entrusted the District Collectors to fix the charges taking vehicle’s mileage, maintenance, tax, and insurance into consideration.

After the launching of the paid scheme, the Opposition had criticized the government.

“People have to pay for the vehicle. They are citing ‘no profit no loss’. Only if the beneficiary has the money he can afford it otherwise he will again carry the body of his dead relative on his shoulders,” Leader of the Opposition in the Odisha Assembly and senior Congress leader Narasingha Mishra had said in his reactions on Mahaprayan scheme turning out to be a ‘pay and use’ scheme.