BJP accuses govt. of removing 13 lakh Aasara pensioners

Telangana BJP has accused the State government of removing 13 lakh people from the eligibility list of Aasra pensions since 2014 and though the age criteria has been reduced to 57 from 65, the number of beneficiaries has been coming down over the years.

The planning department has showed that if 40.35 lakh were getting the pension in 2018-19, it fell down to 39.79 lakh in 2019-20 and to 37.35 lakh in 2020-21 and by April 2022 it further fell to 36.05 lakh, said party president Bandi Sanjay Kumar in an open letter to Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao on Thursday.

If the government pronouncements are to be taken into consideration, there should have been 48.53 lakh pensioners by this time which shows that about 12.47 lakh eligible persons are being denied the same. The government had sanctioned ₹9,717 crore in 2021 and had released ₹7,078 crore and with “silent removal” of lakhs of beneficiaries it has saved up to ₹3,000 crore, he said and sought to remind about the election eve promise of issuing such pensions to everyone from 57 years of age.

The MP said about 11 lakh eligible persons have applied for the pensions afresh and have been eagerly waiting for the government to issue them pensions but the administration has not even begun a preliminary exercise to initiate the welfare scheme.

Those eligible have been running after the public representatives and officials concerned for issuance of pensions in vain, he claimed and faulted the move to make only one member of family eligible when the very scheme was for amelioration of the poor.

The government arrears to the pensioners has also reached ₹86,672, hence it should take steps to immediately issue payments, take steps to reinstate 13 lakh pensioners removed from the scheme and provide new pensions for the 11 lakh fresh applicants by issuing the necessary guidelines and funds, he demanded.

Mr. Sanjay Kumar said the pensions issuance should be a continuous affair without break and further called for meeting of all parties to discuss the issue. The lists of the eligible beneficiaries and pending applications should be put on the public notice boards in all municipal and rural areas, he added.

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Printable version | Aug 4, 2022 4:24:51 pm |