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₹2.5 lakh for COVID-19 widows in Assam

Ambulance staff carry the body of a coronavirus victim at a crematorium in Guwahati on May 26, 2021.   | Photo Credit: AFP

Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma has announced a one-time financial support of ₹2.5 lakh for every woman in the State who lost their husband due to COVID-19.

Marking the completion of a month of his BJP-led government on Thursday, he also announced a scheme that entails parking ₹7.81 lakh as fixed deposit in the bank in the name of each child orphaned by coronavirus.

The Chief Minister said a monthly financial assistance of ₹ 3,500, to be realised from the fixed deposit, would be given to each beneficiary child till he or she attained 24 years of age. The principal amount would be credited to the bank account of each child after turning 24. The ₹ 3,500 included the Central government support of ₹ 2,000 a month.

“We hope the Chief Minister’s Sishu Seva Scheme would help the children who have lost their parents due to the virus,” Dr. Sarma said, adding that the COVID-19-induced widows would also be entitled to the benefits of the Arunodoi scheme along with the monthly widow pension scheme besides the ₹ 2.5 lakh.

Arunodoi scheme

The Arunodoi scheme, introduced during the Sarbananda Sonowal government, entails ₹ 830 a month for women in poor households. The amount is expected to be increased to ₹ 3,000.

“For children under 10 years and adolescent girls with no guardian, the State government will take steps to house them in one of the child care institutions and provide adequate funding towards their upkeep including educational expenditure. Orphaned adolescent girls will be given accommodation in suitable and reputed institutions to ensure their sensitive care and proper protection,” the Chief Minister said.

He handed over cheques and gifts to 11 children whose parents died of COVID-19 infection.

The government would extend a one-time financial package as marriage assistance to such girls when they came of age. The package included a tola (10 grams) of gold under the Arundhati scheme and ₹ 50,000 for each girl.

“Laptops or tablets will be provided to school or college-going orphan for undergoing vocational training and skill- development. All such students will be linked to skill-based education,” the Chief Minister said.

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Printable version | Jan 22, 2022 8:57:19 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/25-lakh-for-covid-19-widows-in-assam/article34781778.ece

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