BHUBANESWAR: The Odisha government has sanctioned an ex-gratia of Rs 2.55 crore to the family members of 17 working journalists of the state who died due to COVID-19, an official release said.
Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik approved a proposal in this regard put-forth by the Information and Public Relations (I&PR) Department on Friday.
An assistance of Rs15 lakh each has been sanctioned for the families of 17 working journalists of the state, who died due to the infection.
The list of journalists who have been sanctioned ex-gratia include-four from Bhubaneswar.
They are: Manas Jaypuria from Zee Odisha, Basanta Das (Freelance), Bijayan Laxmi Mohanty (Ajikali), Pritiman Mohapatra (Times of India).
Three journalists from Bolangir - Subhransu Sekhara Mishra (Sambad), Jateesh Chandra Khamari (Sambad) and Kailash Chandra Sahoo (Pragatibadi) are also in the list.
Similarly, Gobind Behera (TV News 6 Web), Pradeep Kishore Sahu (Sambad), Kishore Chandra Dash (Samaj), Naresh Kumar Behera (Odisha Files), Ratnakar Moharana (Kalinga Jyoti), Nandini, Nilaya Ranjan Pattnaik, (Block Correspondent), Karunakar Sahoo (Anupam Bharat) were from Ganjam districts, whose family members will get the benefits.
Moreover, the next of kin of Bhanuprakash Rath (Naxatra TV) from Kalahandi and Ashok Kumar Sahoo (Manthan) and Pravat Kumar Routray (Loka Sampark) from Jajpur district would get the assistance.
This financial assistance will be disbursed to the next of kin of the deceased journalists from the Journalist Welfare Fund.
Few such cases have been received by the Information and Public Relations Department which will be disbursed after due verification, sources said.
After required enquiry at the district level, eligible applications will be considered for disbursement of the ex-gratia compassionate assistance, an official said.