IMPHAL: Along with assuring to provide every possible help to the aged-people in the state through the welfare schemes of the government, social welfare minister Nemcha Kipgen Saturday announced that an Old Age Home would be opened at Tuibong in Churachandpur district very soon.
She made the announcement while speaking as chief guest on the occasion of 4th anniversary of Kuki Senior Citizens’ Welfare Forum (KSCWF), Churachandpur which was held at Saikholal Ideal School Campus, Canan Veng, Tuibong.
Addressing the gathering, the minister highlighted various centrally sponsored schemes which have been launched especially for the elderly citizens and said that she will take up the initiative of making benefits of these schemes easily accessible to all of them.
Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS) that covers 80 years and above with a pension amount of Rs 200 will soon be proposed to increase to Rs 400, she said. The minister informed that strict instructions have been given to department officials to look into complaints re-garding uneven distribution of old age pensions in the state and take necessary actions at the earliest.
Taking serious note over the issue of holding back of old age pension cards by the agents concerned, the minister said that the department officials have been instructed to directly hand over the cards to the pensioners under the supervision of District Social Welfare Officer (DSWO).
While citing how old age pensions have been successfully implemented in her constituency (Kangpokpi A/C ), Nemcha expressed optimism that in the near future all the districts will follow the same system and make the scheme a grand success in the state.
The Minister also instructed the DCs concerned and related department officers to distribute the pension amount at venues where the aged people can reach easily. She also urged all MLAs to be present during the distribution of old age pension.
Encouraging all those who haven’t received their pension amount to bring up the matter to her notice, the minister assured of possible assistance from her end and warned that any officials who were found involving in malpractices over distribution of the old age pension would be suspended.
The Minister also brought up the issue of manipulation of age by some people to receive the old age benefits and said that such acts hinders the actual beneficiaries from getting the benefits. “To avoid such manipulation, the issuing officers have been instructed to cross verify the beneficiaries’ Aadhaar card and Voters card while issuing old age pension.”
The social welfare minister also lauded the initiative of KSCWF for voluntarily taking up various welfare programmes for the aged people.
Presided over by Churachandpur ADC chairman Khaipao Haokip, the function was also attended by Churachandpur DC Shyam Lal Poonia and DSWO A Umarani Devi as special guest and host of honour respectively.
Source: The People’s Chronicle