Govt approves ex-gratia relief of Rs 50,000 each to COVID-19 victims

Govt approves ex-gratia relief of
Rs 50,000 each to COVID-19 victims
Health workers and volunteers carry body of a patient who died of COVID-19 in Srinagar. [Image used for representational purpose only]File Photo: Aman Farooq for Greater Kashmir

Jammu: The UT Executive Committee for Disaster Management chaired by Chief Secretary Arun Kumar Mehta Wednesday approved the procedural guidelines for ex-gratia relief of Rs 5000 each to COVID-19 victims.

An official spokesman in a statement issued here said that to review the requirement of funds in districts for disaster preparedness, mitigation, and COVID-19 management, the committee led Mehta in furtherance of its earlier decision of providing ex-gratia relief of Rs 50,000 to the next of kin of the victims of COVID-19 approved the procedural guidelines governing the relief distribution.

He directed the formulation of standard operating procedures in consultation with the domain experts for streamlining the disbursal of ex-gratia relief within three days.

During the meeting, it was said that 4176 people had died of COVID-19 and the relief would be disbursed in favour of the families through a transparent verification process via Aadhaar-linked Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT).

As per the approved guidelines, the Deputy Commissioners (DCs) in consultation with the Health department would provide the ex-gratia relief of Rs 50,000 to the next of kin of COVID-19 victims including those involved in relief operations and preparedness activities based on valid death certificates issued in this regard.

The guidelines also require the DCs to provide the online application link for seeking the ex-gratia relief on the district’s official portal.

The chief secretary said that the death certificates mentioning COVID-19 as the cause of death might not have been issued to the victims in the earlier wave and accordingly directed the department to lay down SOP and also constitute a grievance redress committee to facilitate the families in availing the required documentation.

Mehta stressed adherence to the existing data on official COVID deaths and SAKSHAM relief distribution to further streamline the rollout of the ex-gratia relief.

He directed the completion of relief distribution exercise in favour of all beneficiaries within two months.

Moreover, the UT Executive Committee also sanctioned the release of Rs 66.12 crore to districts for distributing disaster relief on account of damages due to incessant rains, hailstorms, and snowfall on 23rd and 24th October 2021.

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