The Delhi government on Tuesday announced financial help to differently abled parents for their daughter's marriage and a fixed deposit scheme for physically challenged students, among other initiatives for the social security and welfare sector.
Presenting the 2019-20 budget in the Delhi Assembly, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, who also holds the finance portfolio, said he has proposed Rs 3,429 crore for implementation of various social security and welfare programmes, schemes and projects.
He said the government proposes to launch a fixed deposit scheme for physically challenged students at each stage of their educational attainment on the pattern of the Ladli scheme.
The Delhi government also proposed an initiative to facilitate mobility of students with locomotor disabilities. These students will be given incentives and concessions in the form of a discount on the price of scooters and motorised tricycles designed to suit their needs.
The government has also made a budgetary provision of Rs 50-crore for a new scheme "Chief Minister Advocates' Welfare Scheme".
This fund will be utilised for various social security measures such as life insurance, medical facility and scholarship for needy advocates and their family members, Mr Sisodia said.
"On the request of the Supreme Court, the high court and the district court''s bar associations, and realising the struggle and difficulties of young lawyers, our government is proposing a new scheme in 2019-20 such that the Chief Minister Advocates' Welfare Scheme, for which, an amount of Rs 50 crore is provided in the budget.
"This is a remarkable initiative for the legal community and shall pave the way for the welfare of legal professionals in the country," he said.
Sisodia said when his government came into power in February 2015, 4.83 lakh beneficiaries were getting financial assistance with an expenditure of Rs 837 crore.
"Now, after four years, we have increased the budget allocation by 2.5 times to Rs 2214 crore covering around 7.60 lakh beneficiaries under financial assistance schemes for senior citizens, persons with special needs and women in distress. "The applications for financial assistance for women in distress can now be filled online through e-District portal," he said.
Senior citizens and vulnerable social groups such as women in distress and specially-abled citizens face several challenges, including poverty and lack of income security and health care services, the deputy chief minister said.
"To ensure social security and safety of senior citizens and the vulnerable social groups of society and to enable them to lead a life of dignity, our government extended financial support at an increased rate and also by reaching out to the needy and targeted people," he said.
Mr Sisodia said an Institute of Rehabilitation and Allied Services to Persons with Disabilities will be set up and a new programme for skill development and rehabilitation of beggars, persons with disabilities and from economically weaker sections will be started in 2019-20.
The government is making a budget provision next year to offer home delivery of ration through Door Step Delivery of Services, a scheme which has got the Cabinet's approval, but could not be implemented due to "unscrupulous forces, hurdles created right from the level of officers to the Lt Governor, and did not let it be implemented under any cost", the AAP leader said.
"Our government provides cheap ration to poor families in Delhi. Our government is determined to implement this scheme and has increased the margin money of ration for the shopkeepers from Rs 70 per quintal to Rs 200 per quintal to smoothly run the public distribution system," he said.
The government wants the poor to get ration in full as per their entitlement and stop pilferage, Mr Sisodia said.
The fair price shopkeeper could barely earn up to Rs 16,000 per month with the margin money at the rate of Rs 70 per quintal, whereas, his expenditure comes to at least Rs 15,000 in a month, he claimed.
The government has realised their problem and allowed them to work honestly by increasing the margin money, he said.