CHANDIGARH: The Punjab finance department has released an amount of Rs 128 crore for old age pension in the state, as per a directive issued by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on January 23, an official said.
The pension was paid on enhanced rates of Rs 750 per month, as announced by the chief minister in the last Assembly session.
This was disclosed here today by the finance department during a review meeting of the various social welfare schemes of the government, chaired by the chief minister, according to an official spokesperson.
Underlining the need to regularise the pension payment, the chief minister said genuine beneficiaries deserved timely payment and his government was committed to ensuring that they do not suffer in any way because of problems created by the previous government.
The total number of beneficiaries currently stands at 16,24,269, against the earlier 19,87,196.
The department had, at the last meeting on January 23, disclosed that 93,521 cases (4.71 per cent) were found to be ineligible, while another 1,96,478 were absentee cases.
The ineligible cases related to those which did not fulfil the eligibility criteria, an official said.