Kalikiri woman gets her MGNREGA wages at the nationwide launch of the DBT scheme

It was a historic moment for Madduri Lakshmi Devi, a daily wage-earner from Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy’s native Kalikiri village, when she became the first Indian to get MGNREGA wages from the postal department using the Aadhaar number.

Having completed 150 days of work, she received the wages of Rs. 2,737 pertaining to the last two weeks. She marked her thumb impression on the reader, which belched out a confirmatory printout in 20 seconds. Lakshmi Devi then received the cash from the Chief Minister, in the presence of Union Ministers Jairam Ramesh and Killi Kruparani, heading the key portfolios of Rural Development and IT & Communications respectively, that ushered in the change in the way benefits are transferred to the people. Similarly, R. Sakuntala of Sanambatla village in Chandragiri constituency became the first to get the disability pension of Rs. 500 through the same mode.

At the nationwide launch of the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme under Aadhaar-enabled payment system through postal accounts here on Saturday, Mr. Kiran explained how the beneficiaries can get their payment, be it wages, pensions or scholarships, ‘anywhere and anytime’. Mr. Ramesh lauded Chittoor for becoming the first district in the country to launch ‘Mee Dabbu Mee Chethiki’, indicating that Nizamabad, Nalgonda, East Godavari, Guntur and Adilabad would follow suit by July 1. While banks and post offices would soon come to the doorsteps of beneficiaries to deliver the payment, SHG women would have a crucial role to play in disbursing them.

“Once the thumb impression is marked and the Aadhaar number fed into the handheld reader, it takes just 20 seconds to authenticate the credentials and confirm the identity, following which the benefit is handed over directly”, he explained. Ms. Kruparani announced the plan to integrate the system across the country in a year, while banks would also be roped in at a later stage.

Member of Parliament (Chittoor) N. Sivaprasad and Minister for Mines and Geology Ms. Arunakumari, who is also the local legislator, brought the serious water crisis staring at the district to the notice of the ministers and sought their intervention.

Tirupati MP Chinta Mohan, Women and Child Welfare Minister Sunita Laxma Reddy and District in-charge Minister K. Parthasarathy were present.