Now, DTH for wages, pension for poor

Move follows Central plan of DBT for subsidies

Despite little success and an abrupt halt in the much-hyped Direct Benefit Transfer for LPG and other schemes, the government on Monday announced its intention to roll-out another vote catching scheme. 

Titled the Direct-to-Home (DTH) scheme, the government aims to handover pension, wages and other entitlements directly to the beneficiaries.

Rural Development Minister Jairam Ramesh also said that a proposal was underway to bring the wages under the rural job scheme at par with the Minimum Wage Act of 1948, implying an increase in wages under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MGNREGA).

Ramesh said: “Today in our delivery system, the leakage is more and the coverage is less. Whether it is food security, health, pensions or MGNREGA. 

“You take any programme. We have a lot of money but how much money actually reaches the beneficiary is a big question mark. It's not a question of money. 

“It's a question of changing the system of delivery and what we have started in the last one year is a fundamental reform of the welfare delivery system involving banks and post offices.”

He said the DTH was already functional in Andhra Pradesh and would begin soon in Jharkhand and in other states.

“There are examples galore where for getting a scholarship you have to pay ten or 15 per cent of your entitlement,” Ramesh said. 

He said the scheme is being developed keeping in mind areas where there are no banks.Ramesh said his ministry has also moved a note to the prime minister’s office and the finance ministry seeking to take steps to amend certain sections of MGNREGA which will bring parity between the minimum wages act and MGNREGA.

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