DHENKANAL: Though the State Government has included all unmarried women above 30 years of age under the Madhubabu Pension scheme in order to ensure their social security, the scheme is yet to be implemented in the district due to non-availability of beneficiary data base. As a result, these women become victims of social neglect.
Sources said as many as 10,000 unmarried women, who are struggling for survival, are running from pillar to post to get the benefits under the scheme in the district.
Last year, the State Government had launched the scheme under the newly created Social Security and Empowerment of Persons with Disabilities (PwD) department. But the data base of all pension holders is yet to be prepared.
Earlier, the District Social Welfare Officer (DSWO) was managing social security-related pension schemes.
After creation of a new department, the District Social Security Officer (DSSO) has been assigned to ensure pensions to widows, physically-challenged and other eligible persons at the district level.
Reports from different grievance cells of the district state that unmarried women are being allegedly subjected to domestic violence.
In their complaints, they have urged the district administration to provide pension under the scheme and livelihood opportunities immediately.
Basanti Sahoo of Sogar village in Kamakshyanagar alleged that several complaints seeking protection from domestic violence have been filed at grievance cell but to no avail.
Social activist Sankarshan Hota said unmarried women should be treated under special category with a policy intervention.
They must be covered under health insurance, rehabilitation and livelihood schemes, he added.
When contacted, DSSO Bishnu Charan Behera said after receiving complaints at the grievance cells, the district administration is trying to cover women above 35 years of age, though the guideline stipulates 30 years of age, under the social security net.
There should be joint effort by Panchayatiraj and Social Security departments to ensure Madhubabu pension for them, he added.