Plan to extend it to beneficiaries of old age pension scheme, says Collector

Move aimed at avoiding delay

National Informatics Centre designs software

TIRUNELVELI: L. Swarna of Kattaalankulam near here and mother of physically and mentally challenged 11-year-old L. Lydia Hilda, was receiving the monthly assistance of Rs.500 for her daughter once in six months (Rs. 3,000) instead of receiving it monthly.

Thanks to the pioneering initiative of Collector M. Jayaraman, District Disability Rehabilitation Officer T. Manohar and the officials of National Informatics Centre here, Ms. Swarna received this assistance for the months of January and February 2010 on March 2 itself as the aid was now being sent through electronic money order.

To avoid an inordinate delay in disbursing the monthly assistance to the beneficiaries, the NIC team here, following instructions from the Collector designed a software that had enabled the short-staffed District Disability Rehabilitation Office (DDRO) office to send the assistance within the shortest possible time through an electronic money order.

As this software and the cheque for Rs. 40 lakh reached the Department of Posts on Monday afternoon, the public sector undertaking started sending the assistance through electronic money order.

On receiving the mails from their district headquarters, the post masters of the sub-post offices went to the doorsteps of all the 4,000-odd beneficiaries and disbursed the aid before 12 noon on Tuesday.

“The assistance will reach the beneficiary without any delay during the first week of every month,” said Mr. Manoharan, who had come to Kattaalankulam, about 30 km from here, on Tuesday, to monitor the handing over of the aid to Ms. Lydia Hilda.

Message facility

The office of DDRO here had begun collecting the mobile phone numbers of the beneficiaries' families now so that they could immediately send messages on the disbursal of the assistance through electronic money order.

“We've achieved the target quite satisfactorily. As our efforts have yielded highly desirable results, we've planned to replicate the same procedure of sending the assistance through electronic money order to beneficiaries of old age pension scheme, assistance for widows etc.,” Mr. Jayaraman told The Hindu.