Bhubaneswar (Odisha) [India], June 18 (ANI): Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday announced a COVID package of Rs 1690.46 crore for the assistance of landless farmers, construction workers, urban poor, Tribal peoples, state food security beneficiaries, National Rural Employment Guarantee Act, 2005 (NREGA) workers, and Divyang students who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Speaking on the occasion, Chief Minister said, "Though all section of society has been affected by the COVID pandemic, financially and socially weaker people are affected most. During the second wave of the pandemic, the lockdown has been clamped in the state and in the last two months it has further affected these section of the society."
As per an official release issued by the state government, under this package, Rs 178.911 crore will be provided to around 17.84 lakh landless farmer families in the state, and Rs 206 crore will be used for the assistance of all landless farming families in three instalments under the Kalia Scheme.
"Similarly, Rs 260 crore will be provided to the urban poor living in 114 municipal areas of the state under MUKTA Yojana by December 21. Under the scheme, In addition to their daily wages, workers working under the NREGA scheme will be paid an additional Rs 50 per day as assistance. The state government will bear Rs 300 crore from April 21 to June 21 for the increased wages," the release said.
The Chief Minister has also announced that 5 kilograms of rice will be provided free of cost to the beneficiaries of the state's Food Security Scheme from July to November 21, and the government will spend Rs 92.86 crore on it.
"As many as 66,214 tribal people from 13 Particularly Vulnerable Tribal Groups (PVTGs) living in State will be given Rs 5,000 per family for livelihood assistance. A sum of Rs 33.10 crore will be spent on this. the money will be deposited directly into their bank account. The pre-matric scholarship amount for Scheduled Caste & Scheduled Tribe students will be credited to their parents' bank accounts directly between April 21 to September 21 in two phases. It will cost Rs 252.35 crore and it will benefit 5.40 lakh students," the release said.
The Chief Minister further announced Rs 1,500 for registered construction labourers in the state and said a sum of Rs 360 crore will be spent on this.
Under the schemes, 3.72 crores will also be provided to the 26,465 students under Banishree scholarships for divyang students between April 21 to June 21. Special school students who stay at home and study online will be paid Rs 1,245 per month for food expenses, it will benefit the 6,471 students. (ANI)