About 15000 disabled denied pensions in East Godavari

KAKINADA: With the State government applying the norm of ‘One pension for one family’, thousands of disabled persons are unable to get pensions. Nearly 15,000 disabled have not been able to get pensions since 2014.

The authorities have said that they are unable to do anything in the wake of government policy.    

There are 19,388 disabled persons, 22,470 persons with hearing impairment, 35,389 physically challenged, 10,179 blind persons, 13,601 persons with multiple disabilities and 14,000 persons with other disabilities in East Godavari district.

Out of those, only persons with 40 per cent disability are getting Rs 1,000 per month, and those with over 40 per cent disability are getting Rs 1,500 pension from the government.

According to 2011 Census, there are 1,15,028 disabled persons in the district. At present, 69,000 disabled persons are getting pensions. The remaining 46,028 persons have not got any pension. Some of the disabled persons are confined to wheelchair or bed. As most of them are uneducated, they are unable to provide their details at the Software for Assessment of Disabled Access Rehabilitation and Empowerment (SADAREM) camp.

Peethala Veena Venkata Satyanarayana alias Chanti Babu (27) from Simhadripuram village at Kirlampudi mandal has not been able to get pension for the last three years. Chanti Babu was a contract employee with the Electricity department.

He fell from an electric pole after receiving an electric shock in June 2014. Initially, he was shifted to the Kakinada Government General Hospital and later he had undergone a surgery at a private hospital. Chanti Babu could not become normal again after falling down from the electric pole.

Even though the Rajamahendravaram GGH issued a disability certificate with 41 percent disability to Chanti Babu, the authorities told him that he was not eligible for pension, because of ‘One pension for one family’ policy. The revenue officers denied pension to Chanti Babu as his father too was drawing pension. Chanti Babu urged the government to grant him maintenance.

Vikalangula Hakkula Vedika president Kandavalli Bharat Kumar alleged that even though Chief Minister N Chandrababu Naidu  scrapped Janmabhoomi committees, they still have a say in  granting pensions to the disabled.

K V V Satyanarayana, Assistant Director, Department for the Welfare of Disabled, said the government will grant pensions to only one person in the family be it a senior citizen, a widow or disabled.

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