Grant equal relief to people of all disabilities during COVID-19, demand groups
An appeal has been made to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to extend the ₹ 1,000 ex-gratia aid for disabled people during the COVID-19 pandemic to the entire community. The matter has been raised by several senior BJP leaders in Rajasthan.
Extend the three-month ex-gratia pension sanctioned for disabled people during the COVID-19 lockdown to more people with disabilities. That’s the appeal going out to Prime Minister Narendra Modi from Hemant Bhai Goyal, National Vice President, Divyang Adhikar Mahasangh in Rajasthan.
Goyal says he has to PM Modi and taken the matter up with Thawarchand Gehlot, Minister of Social Justice and Empowerment, Government of India.
Sub-section 3C of Section 24 of the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016 says that even people with 40% disability are eligible for government assistance during the time of disasters, natural or man-made. This is as per the United Nations Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities as well. Everyone should be given the same relief. When there is so much being done for weaker sections of society like farmers, why not the disabled community? – Hemant Bhai Goyal, National Vice President, Divyang Adhikar Mahasangh
Ex-gratia amount too meagre, say groups
Goyal has got the support of Diya Kumari, BJP MP from Rajsamand, Rajasthan as well Khillimal Jain, former disability commissioner of Rajasthan. Jain has also written to Mr Gehlot asking him to take up the matter with the Centre.
“You are requested to pass orders to provide financial assistance to all PwDs suffering from 40% disability”, says the letter.
Many groups have expressed disappointment with the economic package announced for the disabled community following the pandemic. Under the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) Scheme, the ex-gratia of ₹ 1,000 will be given over three months in two instalments.
“The amount by itself is very meagre and adding insult to injury is the fact that this will be given in two instalment spread over three months, which would average to ₹ 333.33 per month. This is grossly inadequate”, said the National Platform for the Rights of the Disabled (NPRD) in a statement to the media.
The NPRD has asked for the amount to be revised to ₹ 5,000 per month to all disabled, people. There are chances of PM Modi making a fresh announcement in the coming days. There are hopes that these concerns raised will be addressed.
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- Coronavirus relief for disabled citizens inadequate & disappointing, say disability rights activists
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