Dr I Ibohalbi Singh questions Social Welfare Minister on pension scheme e-payment

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IMPHAL, June 11: “There are four pension schemes for which payments are made though the Social Welfare Department by the state government to the beneficiaries. The schemes are Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS), Manipur State Old Age Pension Scheme (MSOAPS), Indira Gandhi National Widow Pension (IGNWP) and Indira Gandhi National Disabled Persons Pension (IGNDPP). It’s been a year and a half that the beneficiaries of this above mentioned schemes have not received their pension money and the money is with the officials of the Social Welfare Department.”

This was said by opposition leader Dr I Ibohalbi Singh raising a calling attention motion on the second day sitting of the 5th Session of the 10th Manipur Legislative Assembly today saying the transferring of the honorariums of the Old Age Pension beneficiaries to their personal bank accounts have failed.

He further said that during the Governor’s Address, it was mentioned that 77 percent beneficiaries of these pension schemes have opened their bank accounts.

However, it is learnt that many have failed to open their bank accounts due to lack of nationalised banks nearby in the localities of the beneficiaries or the beneficiaries inability to cough up money to open an account, he said.

It is also learnt that some of the beneficiaries have even passed away while waiting for their bank accounts to be opened to avail the service of e-payment, the MLA continued.

And for some beneficiaries even though they have managed to open their bank account, their payments have never reached their accounts, he added.

Considering the inconveniences faced by the beneficiaries, the opposition leader called the attention of the House asking to continue with the old method of payment until the whole process of e-payment is completed.

Replying to the calling attention motion, Social Welfare Minister AK Mirabai Devi said that 80 percent beneficiaries have opened their personal bank accounts and 60 percent have already received their pensions.

The remaining will also receive their pensions very soon, she added.

The Minister also clarified that an excess number of people have been added earlier to the beneficiaries list of these schemes which is the main cause of the problems being faced.

Joining in the discussion, leader of the house CM Okram Ibobi Singh clarified regarding the increment in the pension schemes that even the lines of the state government employees were cleared after the preparation of MGEL.

The CM also gave a detailed report about the works taken up by the state government in regard with the schemes.

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