Funds go unspent as Delhi looks for urban poor definition

In yet another attempt to step up his pro-poor image, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has decided to push for adoption of clear guidelines to identify the ‘urban poor’ and benefit them.

Published: 16th July 2017 08:53 AM  |   Last Updated: 16th July 2017 08:53 AM   |  A+A-

Image used for representational purpose only.

NEW DELHI: In yet another attempt to step up his pro-poor image, Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal has decided to push for adoption of clear guidelines to identify the ‘urban poor’ and benefit them.

Some days back, he had announced a scheme for providing free treatment in private hospitals.
The Centre has approved a budget of Rs 17 crore for the Delhi government under the National Urban Livelihood Mission (NULM). But till now the amount remains unspent as the government doesn’t have any definition of urban poor.

In a proposal discussed with Delhi Chief Secretary M M Kutty recently, adoption of the definition of urban poor as mentioned in the Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna (PMAY) was suggested. It was also discussed that homeless and BPL card holders can be jointly considered as poor. In the past two years, government hasn’t been able to find out the right beneficiaries in absence of a proper definition. Last year, Rs 19 crore was allotted for the welfare schemes.

“Different departments use different parameters to identify poor. But NULM doesn’t have clear guidelines. In the meeting, it was discussed to adopt the PMAY’s definition or clubbing a some groups,” said Nisha Nair, Project Officer, Smajik Suvidha Sangam.  

Although during Sheila Dikshit’s tenure money was spent on the schemes, there was no clarity on definition.

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