Early Times Report
SRINAGAR, Feb 16: While Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti has asked the Social Welfare Department (SWD) to ensure effective implementation of the welfare schemes, there are over 2.20 lakh cases pending under various welfare schemes.
Mehbooba while reviewing the working of the SWD has stressed on the need for an integrated approach for effective implementation of various welfare schemes of the government.
She directed for periodic review of implementation pace of the schemes by the nodal agencies and time-to-time feedback from the ground.
Sources said the Chief Minister held a meeting in the backdrop of the Centre's unhappiness over implementation of the welfare schemes and that the undeserving ones were getting benefit from them.
"The Centre has withheld funds several times in the past over misuse of social welfare scheme funds. The non-releasing of funds is the reason that thousands of cases are pending in the state under various welfare schemes," an official of the SWD said.
"There are hundreds of complaints that undeserving people are getting benefit of welfare schemes, most of them workers of political parties, while files of deserving ones are pending for years," the official said.
He said the government should hold a
fresh verification of the beneficiaries of these schemes.
Misuse of GoI funds
"There are hundreds of complaints that undeserving people are getting benefit of welfare schemes. Most of the beneficiaries are workers of political parties, while files of deserving ones are pending for years," an official said.
The official said there has been a surge in number of widows, differently-abled and old age pension cases in the state, with around 2.20 lakh cases awaiting disposal with the SWD.
Around 1.20 lakh cases are pending in Ladakh and Kashmir region and 1 lakh in Jammu region. The highest numbers of cases are pending in Budgam and Jammu district.
"I have registered my name with the SWD two years ago for pension since I have no source of income. But officials told me they could not clear my case due to non-availability of funds," Rahte, a 64-year-old woman said.
She said since the death of her husband two years ago, she has been pursuing the case to receive widow pension. "So far all my efforts have proved futile as I have received no relief from the government," she said.
An official said the old age, widow and disability cases have not been cleared by the government due to paucity of funds. He said the department was presently providing pension to around 5 lakh widows and old age persons in the state.
The official said the department had taken up the issue with the Centre. "Once we get funds, these pending cases will be cleared and they will also get pensions under various schemes," the official said.