AMARAVATI, Dec 3: Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy announced that the pension enhancement will be effected from July 2021 taking from the existing Rs 2250 to Rs 2500, on the occasion of Dr YS Rajashekar Reddy birth anniversary and affirmed that his government is always on the forefront in welfare and the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) bringing transparency into the governance.
Concluding the short discussion on social welfare schemes and DBT in the legislative assembly on Thursday, the Chief Minister said we have been carrying out welfare schemes and transferring the money directly into their bank accounts despite hard times while the previous government has never bothered about welfare.
While TDP had shown knee-jerk reaction and stated implementing welfare schemes just before elections our government has been implementing the schemes right from assuming office. They recognise the presence of people only before elections while we are with people always. The pension amount was increased from Rs 1,000 just before elections while we have been giving pensions as announced at Rs 2,250 and have reduced the eligibility age from 65 to 60.
Until October 2018, the total number of beneficiaries was only 44,32,592 but today over 61.94 lakh are receiving the pension. The monthly expenditure of pensions during the TDP term never crossed Rs 500 crore, but in our government, the monthly expenditure for pensions is at Rs 1500 Crore, he said.
Showing the contrast between the previous government and the 18-month term of the present government, the Chief Minister said while TDP during its five years has spent Rs 79, 806 crore, our government has spent Rs 58, 729 crores in just 18 months for the welfare of weaker sections. For BC welfare TDP has spent Rs 30,976 during its five-year term while our government has spent Rs 37, 931 crores in 18 months. For Minority welfare TDP has spent Rs 2,713 crores I five years while we have spent Rs 3,668 crores, he said. Translating it to expenditure per year our government has spent Rs 39, 153croes while the TDP figure works out to Rs 15, 419 crores.
We are sincere about BC welfare. While the reservations for local bodies were at 59.85 percent and Chandrababu Naidu did not go to the polls in 2018 and when we announced the polls, his henchman moved the court and brought down the reservation to 50 percent. Such is the sincerity of TDP, which has watered down all social security and medicare schemes.
Our government has been carrying out welfare schemes covering all sections in a transparent manner. Women welfare schemes include Amma Vodi, YSR Kapu Nestham, YSR Asara, YSR zero interest, YSR Pension Kanuka, Jagananna Vidya Devena, Jagananna Vasati Deevena, Jagananna Goru Muddha, YSR Vahana Mitra, law nestham, and others. YSR Cheyutha, YSR Asara schemes were introduced to benefit women and MoUs were signed with major business houses, including Amul and the women would be empowered economically. About 77 k shops were started by women and we will handhold them. They will soon be achieving sustainable livelihood.
We have revamped government schools and provided a healthy menu for midday meal along with pleasant infrastructure at school with all amenities and have launched YSR Sampoorna Posha for pregnant women and lactating mothers and children up to six years, he said.
Village secretariats were set up to door deliver the welfare schemes and provided employment to 4 lakh people. House sites are being distributed on December 25 in the name of the woman of the household and prohibition is being implemented strictly, he said.
Brushing aside the allegations by TDP leaders on the Cheyutha scheme, the Chief Minister presented a video clipping of his padayatra on September 3, 2018, where he clearly mentioned about the Cheyutha scheme. He said that after considering the suggestions on the idea of providing pensions to women from 45 years of age, he brought a Cheyutha scheme to benefit women over 4 years by giving Rs 75,000 for each SC, ST, BC, Minority woman. The Chief Minister said Rs 4604 crore has been given for 24,55,534 women through YSR Cheyutha scheme.
Earlier, Minister for BC Welfare Ch Venugopala Krishna said that the government has been implementing the welfare schemes with zero corruption he tabled a statement in the House.
The statement said , the government had spent Rs 28,906 Crore through Direct Beneficiary Transfer (DBT) benefiting 1,77,09,653 people during 2019-20 financial year, and during 2020-21 up to November, the government disbursed Rs 33,483 Crore through DBT benefiting 3,14,06,765 people in State.
For the welfare schemes implemented by welfare corporations, nearly Rs 25,254 Crore was spent during 20019-20 benefiting over 1.30 Crore. Between April-November 2020, the government spent Rs 26,156 Crore benefiting 1.15 crore people.
Similarly, through welfare schemes taken by departments, Rs 3651.96 was provided to 46.71 lakh beneficiaries between 2019-20 financial year. Between April-November 2020, the government spent Rs 5945 Crore benefiting 62.76 lakhs.
Going by the contingent DBT schemes, the State government had spent Rs 1382 Crore benefitting 1.35 Crore people just in a span of seven months between April-November 2020.
Speaking on BC Welfare, the Minister said that almost Rs 26,935 Crores has been allocated to the BC Welfare department as an annual budget, of which Rs 20637.94 Crore was spent in the ongoing financial year. The State government is committed to the welfare and development of BC’s and thus spent Rs 37,931.33 Crore benefitting over 2.83 Crore beneficiaries through various welfare schemes in the last 18 months.
Participating in the discussion, Minister for Women Development and Child Welfare, Thaneti Vanitha said that Andhra Pradesh is the only state in the country implementing 50 percent reservation to women in nominated posts, nominated works contracts, and service contracts providing an opportunity to the women. To address the problem of anemia and malnutrition among pregnant women and lactating mothers and children aged between 6-72 months, the State government brought YSR Sampoorna Poshana and YSR Sampoorna Poshana Plus, which provides a nutritious meal every day at Anganwadi centres.
For YSR Pension Kanuka, all the beneficiaries were taken on a saturation basis, during 2019-20 58,82,285 have received pension right at their doorstep by spending Rs 15,538. Likewise, between 2020-21(April-November) the number of beneficiaries was increased to 61,94,245. Under YSR Aasara scheme, as many as 7,89,476 beneficiaries have received scheme benefits of Rs 6,329 Crore between April-November 2020. Similarly, under YSR Cheyutha scheme, Rs 4455 Crore was given to 23,76,010 women between April-November 2020, directly crediting Rs 18,750 into the accounts of the beneficiaries.
MLA RK Roja said that Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy had brought many welfare schemes for women empowerment, like implementing Zero-interest loans, Cheyutha Aasara. The Chief Minister had also thought to use the scheme benefits as an investment for a recurring income to women, and thus signed MoUs with top companies like Amul, ITC.
Deputy Chief Minister Pamula Pushpa Sreevani said that the government is committed to the welfare of tribals as promised in the manifesto by implementing welfare schemes under Navaratnalu, in a corruption-free and transparent manner. The government has sanctioned a tribal engineering college in Kurupam and a medical college at Paderu. Besides these, the government is also establishing super specialty hospitals in tribal areas to provide better healthcare services to the tribals.
Reiterating that the State government is more focussed on covering SC families under the Navaratnalu welfare schemes, Minister for Social Welfare Pinipe Viswarup said that Rs 10672.40 Crore has been spent on social welfare schemes benefiting 91.35 lakh beneficiaries under YSR Cheyutha itself, as many as 5.55 lakh women were benefited during 2020-21 with an amount Rs 1040.83 Crore. The State government has issued orders for installing a 125 feet bronze statue of Dr BR Ambedkar at the prime location of Vijayawada city, which is estimated to be completed by 14 April 2022.
Other speakers lauded the welfare schemes and the DBT system.