Old age pension not reaching beneficiaries: health minister

Delhi Health Minister, A K Walia has observed that the three Municipal Corporations of Delhi (MCD) have not been able to ensure the beneficiaries in the capital city  the old age/widow pension because of lack of proper social security assistance.

The delay in release of pensions is causing harassment to beneficiaries. A large number of beneficiaries were getting financial assistance from MCDs through area councillors and beneficiaries are now left in lurch due to change of the public representatives after the elections of municipal bodies held in April 2012.

Walia, on Monday, has requested the director, local bodies, Delhi government, to instruct the corporations to release the arrears of pensioners, at least, up to the end of last financial year from the respective local bodies.

Officials believe that this would put an end to the hardships and harassments faced by beneficiaries. Walia has also observed that the system of approaching the area councillor in person for getting the pension each time is cumbersome.

The minister has suggested financial assistance  such as pension may be released through banking institutions in an electronic form to make it simple for beneficiaries. The minister has also asked the Director, local bodies to get this issue resolved at the earliest.

Walia has also further questioned the ongoing practice in the local bodies for the booking of MCD community halls and parks with a recommendatory letter / NOC from the ward councillor. The minister called for adopting a centralised booking counter for online handling of requests. It may be recalled that the director, local bodies, had issued a showcause notice asking the corporations to explain why the booking of community halls not be done on the first come first serve basis.
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