Odisha CM bats for payment of NSAP pension in cash

Opposing the Centre’s move to introduce direct benefit compliant system for disbursement of pension, Odisha maintained that any imposition of bank payment system will cause hardship to to the people.

Published: 08th December 2017 03:13 AM  |   Last Updated: 08th December 2017 10:29 AM   |  A+A-

Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik (File | PTI)

By Express News Service

BHUBANESWAR: Opposing the Centre’s move to introduce direct benefit compliant system for disbursement of pension under the National Social Assistance Programme (NSAP), the State Government maintained that any imposition of bank payment system will cause undue and avoidable hardship to the vulnerable beneficiaries.

In a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday said, “I am sanguine you would appreciate the special circumstances of the State and not impose conditions on release of funds which may militate against the interests of the beneficiaries.”

Requesting the Centre to release funds under NSAP without imposing any conditions, the Chief Minister said, “I firmly believe that disbursement of pension in cash in accordance with the convenience and choice of beneficiaries is in the best interest of the beneficiaries.”

The Chief Minister’s letter to the Prime Minister came in the wake of a letter received by the State Government from the Ministry of Rural Development over disbursement of pension, under NSAP scheme, through Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) platform.

The Ministry’s letter, issued in mid-November, had said the sanction of second installment of NSAP is conditional and the State Government is required to detail the action plan for switching over to the DBT platform. It also said the State should work with the banks to implement the RBI instructions on doorstep delivery of banking services to senior citizens and differently-abled persons.

The Chief Minister said, the guidelines of the NSAP clearly lay down that the guiding principle for disbursement of pension must be the choice and convenience of the beneficiaries. He said the State Government had conducted a sample study of the pension beneficiaries in 2016-17 and it was found that they were not willing to accept pension through banks and special monitoring and supervision by the RBI.
Naveen said, the State Government has been disbursing pension in cash on every 15th day of a month at the Gram Panchayats and ULB (urban local body) headquarters in an open and transparent manner. All beneficiaries assemble there are provided pension in cash in public view, he said.

This was being done, the CM said, in view of the difficulties people face in accessing banking service. There are 4,378 gram panchayats in the State with no bank branches. In other panchayats, too, existing banks have only one staff handling transactions, which makes it difficult for them to take the load of a large number of pension beneficiaries, he said.

The Chief Minister also pointed out that Odisha model of pension disbursement has been a subject of scholarly research.

Stay up to date on all the latest Odisha news with The New Indian Express App. Download now
(Get the news that matters from New Indian Express on WhatsApp. Click this link and hit 'Click to Subscribe'. Follow the instructions after that.)


Disclaimer : We respect your thoughts and views! But we need to be judicious while moderating your comments. All the comments will be moderated by the newindianexpress.com editorial. Abstain from posting comments that are obscene, defamatory or inflammatory, and do not indulge in personal attacks. Try to avoid outside hyperlinks inside the comment. Help us delete comments that do not follow these guidelines.

The views expressed in comments published on newindianexpress.com are those of the comment writers alone. They do not represent the views or opinions of newindianexpress.com or its staff, nor do they represent the views or opinions of The New Indian Express Group, or any entity of, or affiliated with, The New Indian Express Group. newindianexpress.com reserves the right to take any or all comments down at any time.

facebook twitter whatsapp