Krishna (Andhra Pradesh) [India], April 12 (ANI): Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Monday praised the efforts of village and ward volunteers in the state who are providing their valuable services to the people.
"I appreciate the selfless services of volunteers. There are almost 2.6 lakhs of volunteers. More than 50 per cent of them are women. Almost 90 per cent of these volunteers are SC, ST, OBC and Minorities," Reddy said at the felicitation programme of village volunteers and ward volunteers with Seva Mitra, Seva Ratna and Seva Vajra Awards at Poranki village, Penamaluru Mandal, Krishna District.
Village and ward volunteers is a system introduced in Andhra Pradesh by the Yuvajana Sramika Rythu Congress Party (YSRCP) government for disbursal of benefits of government schemes to the public.
Reddy said that the volunteers are distributing welfare pensions on the first of every month.
"That is why our government has decided to facilitate volunteers with Seva Mitra, Seva Ratna and Seva Vajra Awards. This felicitation is being done at the time of Ugadi festival," he said.
He added that volunteers are serving the people of the state without looking for the caste, creed, religion, or political party affiliation of the beneficiaries.
"The YSRCP government brought village and ward volunteers system and village secretariat system almost 20 months ago. Now the entire nation is looking towards this system. How these volunteers are working. There is almost 1.4 lakh other staff in village secretariats. These volunteers are key people in disbursing welfare pensions to senior citizens, divyaangs, etc."
The YSRCP government claimed that this system is part of its plans of achieving Gram Swaraj. There are 2.59 lakh village and ward volunteers in the state.
"Opposition party and its media are slinging mud on Volunteers system. I appeal to you not to feel bad about such baseless criticism. What you are doing is not merely a job, but a selfless service. I appreciate one and all of you," he added.
Cash rewards of Rs 10,000 to Seva Mitra awardees; Rs 20,000 to Seva Ratna awardees and Rs 30,000 to Seva Vajra awardees will be given along with certificates, according to the officials.
As many as 2,18,115 volunteers are given Seva Mitra awards; 4000 volunteers are given Seva Ratna awards and 875 volunteers are given Seva Vajra awards.
The awards distribution will be conducted at every assembly constituency level in the next few days. (ANI)