Himansu Shekhar Rout

Ahead of the upcoming general elections, the Odisha government on Wednesday announced a hike in the monthly pension of artistes, weavers, weaving assistants, and handicraft artisans.  

According to a press release from the CMO, artistes’ monthly pension was hiked from Rs 1200 to Rs 2000 while Rs 2500 will be given to the artistes above 80 years.

As many as 80,000 artistes will receive pension money under the Mukhya Mantri Kalakar Sahayata scheme between February 20 and 25.   
It was stated, “Our artistes are our pride. They play a key role in the promotion and spread of our language, literature, and culture. In the larger interest of the artistes, Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik has hiked the monthly pension of the artistes to Rs 2000 and those of over 80 years will get Rs 2500."    

Earlier, 50,000 artistes in the state used to get Rs 1200 per month. However, now 80,000 artists will be covered under the scheme.

In another major decision, the government launched the Mukhyamantri Baristha Bunakar O Karigar Sahayata Yojana. As per the announcement, weavers, weaving assistants, and handicraft artisans will be given monthly pension assistance of Rs 2000, and those above 80 years will get Rs 2500.

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Earlier, weavers used to get Rs 500 per month while there was no provision of assistance for senior artisans and weavers.  
The enrolled beneficiaries will receive their assistance between February 20 and 25. 

Weavers aged between 40 years up to 80 years will be given Rs 2000 while those over 80 years will be given Rs 2500. 
As per reports, there are over 1,25,000 weavers and weaving assistants while 1,50,000 handicraft artisans are present in the state. 

As per guidelines, only one person from weavers’ or artisans’ families is entitled to the pension. The amounts will be credited to their Aadhaar-linked bank accounts.