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Govt’s education, insurance and pension schemes for Covid-hit families

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Ground Report | New Delhi: The central government has announced provision of various facilities including pension to the dependents of those who lost their lives due to Covid-19. Government said that apart from pension for dependents, the government will ensure enhanced liberalized insurance compensation for families affected by Covid. Prime Minister Narendra Modi said that these steps will reduce the troubles of the families facing financial crisis. The government stands with the families of the Covid victims, he added.

Addressing the financial difficulties of families who have lost their earning members to coronavirus, the government also announced that children left without a caregiver due to Covid-19 will be provided free education. These children will be provided financial assistance of Rs 10 Lakhs from the PM-CARES fund. Here’s a brief description of these insurance and pension schemes, and the free educations scheme.

Pension Scheme

Dependents of those who have died from Covid will now be able to avail pension coverage from the Employee State Insurance Corporation (ESIC) pension scheme. They will be entitled to 90% of the average daily wage the worker made. A PMO official recounted the conditions for eligibility: the insured person must have registered on the ESIC site at least 3 months before the diagnosis of Covid. The deceased insured person had to be employed for wages and be paid/payable for at least 78 days in a 1 year period immediately before diagnosis. This aid will be available retrospectively from March 24, 2020 to March 24, 2022.

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Insurance Scheme

The PMO also stressed on the assistance via the Employees’ Deposit Linked Insurance (EDLI) scheme. The maximum insurance claim which was previously Rs. 6 lakhs, is now up to Rs. 7 lakhs. The government also restored the minimum benefit of Rs. 2.5 lakhs. Moreover, they also liberalised eligibility conditions in favour of families of deceased contractual and casual employees.

According to the report published by Indian Express, Kin of employees who shifted jobs before 12 months before their death can avail benefits. The scheme will apply for 3 years, in effect (retrospectively) from 15th February, 2020.

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PM-CARES Assistance

Alongside these, the centre also announced a few measures for children orphaned because of the coronavirus pandemic. Children aged 11-18 will get admission in central government residential schools such as Navodaya Vidyalaya, Sainik School etc. Those below 10 years of age will get admission in the closest Kendriya Vidyalaya or in a private school as a day scholar. Private school fees as well as the payment for notebooks, uniform etc. will be taken from PM-CARES.

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The government has also promised to create a corpus of Rs. 10 lakhs for each orphaned child from the PM-CARES when they turn 18. A monthly stipend from the fund will go to cater to the child’s personal requirements till they turn 23, at which age, they will get the full corpus. The Ministry of Labour and Employment are adding detailed guidelines regarding these schemes.

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