Wednesday 19 September 2018

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Economy | Finance

LIC's unique mass pension scheme launched

 

The Life Insurance Corporation has entered into a new kind of social security cover at mass level, thanks to the 'freedom from hunger' scheme launched by Goa government - the first of its kind in the country.

The unique concept provides financial security in the form of a monthly pension of Rs 500 to any senior citizen, disabled person or non-functional workman of the state, who has no income source of his own.

The pension amount will rise at the rate of five per cent per annum, taking into account the increasing price index. The disbursement will begin from January.

Launching it as Dayanand Social Security Scheme on Gandhi Jayanti Day, LIC chairman G N Bajpai announced that the scheme would be now also extended to other states of India, provided they agree with the modus operandi.

"I buy the pension from the LIC", states chief minister Manohar Parrikar, the architect of the scheme. He plans to create a corpus of around Rs 100 crore, by making annual provision of only Rs 20 crore each in the budget for the first five years.

The tiny state ultimately plans to cover around 25,000 persons, who will be paid life-time pension, to be extended to the surviving wife or husband or minor children after death of the beneficiary.

No matter the senior citizen's children earn or not, anybody crossing 60 years could avail the scheme if he has no direct source of income 'of his own'. Parrikar has also included destitutes or deserted women/widow above 18 years or a spinster above 50 years into it.

The scheme is also extended to workmen like toddy tappers, coconut pluckers, coolies, traditional fishermen, agricultural labour, drivers/conductors/cleaners of rikshaw, taxi, motorcycle taxi, truck or public transport buses, the minute they stop earning their livelihood through their profession, due to disability or age factor.

In case of accidental deaths, the LIC will also pay Rs 30,000 to the family, besides the pension, provided the beneficiaries register themselves by paying Rs 500. The registration fee for the general pension scheme is fixed at Rs 100.

As this scheme covers almost every needy and disabled person in the state, Parrikar has amalgamated all the existing state schemes into it, including widow pension, old age pension and Dayanand Niradhar Madat Yojana.

"I am also trying to pursue the centre to bring central schemes of similar nature under it", states the chief minister.

The LIC however plans to review the success of the Goa scheme, before it proposes to extend the scheme to other states in the country.






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