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Odisha Fights Corona: CM Naveen announces Rs 2,200 cr package

Bhubaneswar: A day after the Centre announced an Rs 1.7lakh crore package for the poor and the vulnerable groups amid the Coronavirus lockdown, Odisha CM Naveen Patnaik on Friday cleared an assistance package of Rs 2,200 cr for the poor in the state.

Citing that the outbreak of the Coronavirus has significantly affected the livelihood of the poor, CM Naveen Patnaik said that all the beneficiaries of the food security scheme will be getting 3 months’ ration in advance and all the 94 lakh families under the programme will be getting Rs 1000 cash assistance. All this will entail a total expenditure of Rs 940 crore.

Moreover, under the social security scheme, 48 lakh beneficiaries are getting 4 month’s pension allowance in advance for which a total expenditure to the tune of Rs 932 crores will be incurred.

The construction workers, who are expected to be the most and immediately affected cohort in the coronavirus pandemic, will be receiving Rs 1500 cash assistance. The State government will be spending Rs 330 crore in this regard to ensure assistance to around 22 lakh construction workers.

Earlier yesterday, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced a special relief package of Rs 1.7 lakh crore to provide immediate relief to the poor & the vulnerable groups in the wake of coronavirus outbreak-triggered lockdown.

Our first priority is to ensure that food and cash reach the poor as they will be the most affected by the lockdown and the Rs 1.7 lakh crore package will ensure immediate relief for them.

Some of the major announcements included front-loading of the 1st installment of Rs 2000 under PM KISAN which will be disbursed in the first week of April. Moreover, around 20 crore women Jan Dhan account holders will receive Rs 500/month for the next 3 months, while elderly, widows, & divyangs will get one-time additional cash transfer of Rs 1,000 in 2 installments. Under Ujjwala scheme, the Centre announced to provide free LPG cylinders for the next 3 months to the 8.3 crore BPL families.

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