Srinagar, Oct 25: Jammu and Kashmir’s Lieutenant Governor Manoj Sinha on Wednesday said that there is a dire need of thorough eligibility check among pension recipients, as a substantial number of pensioners are currently receiving pensions without meeting the necessary criteria.
As per news agency, speaking at a pension Sammelan event where he interacted with pension beneficiaries at SKICC Srinagar, the LG expressed concerns about the eligibility of a significant number of pension recipients and said that there is need to reevaluate the 40 percent disability certificates to ensure that pensions are granted only to those who meet the eligibility criteria.
“If a deserving individual doesn’t receive their pension while someone who doesn’t meet the criteria is benefiting from it, we need to address this issue and conduct thorough verifications,” he added.
He further said that the government is actively working on a mission to enroll more beneficiaries for old age, widow, and disability pensions. “Widows and divorced women have various opportunities to secure their livelihood independently, including the Self-Help Scheme, which they should actively engage in,” the LG said, adding that, “In our society, it is our moral duty to respect and assist the elderly. The government’s responsibility is to ensure their well-being by providing pensions, allowing them to lead a life of dignity. A pension is not akin to a salary but a supportive gesture from the government to improve their quality of life,”
The LG underscored the importance of upholding their ancient traditions, fulfilling their civilizational duty, and instilling a sense of ‘Sanskar’ in caring for the elderly, providing social security, and offering support to vulnerable sections. He said that the top priority of the J&K Administration is to ensure universal coverage and treat beneficiaries with respect.
“It’s noteworthy that in J&K, we extend pension benefits to widows as young as 18 years old, while in other parts of the country, widows typically become eligible at the age of 45,” he added.
“Prior to 2021, the monthly pension was just a hundred rupees, which was then raised to 200 in 2016. Now, under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi, it has been substantially increased to 1000 rupees, and this upward trend will continue in the future. We follow a formula that takes into account factors like inflation,” the LG added.
“It is heartening to see that Srinagar district has achieved 100% coverage under the Integrated Social Security Scheme, and pensions have been successfully disbursed to beneficiaries up to the month of September,” the LG said.
Regarding the Golden Card scheme, he mentioned that only 2 to 3 percent of people remain unregistered in the scheme, often due to their own inadvertence—(KNO)