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Relief worth Rs 100 cr given to kin of Covid victims: Maharashtra govt

The state government began disbursing Rs 50,000 ex-gratia each to kin of Covid-19 victims following a Supreme Court ruling in September

Written by Manoj Dattatrye More | Pune |
Updated: December 28, 2021 3:24:59 am
Maharashtra has seen over 1,42,000 deaths due to Covid-19 including 19,000 in Pune district.

As many as 25,000 families who lost their loved ones to Covid-19 in the state have been paid Rs 50,000 for each death by the state government. Officials said over Rs 100 crore has been disburbed so far by the government to families which lost one or more members to Covid-19.

“As of Saturday, between 25,000 to 30,000 families have received the ex-gratia amount of Rs 50,000 for each death of a member. So far, we have been able to disburse a collective amount of over Rs 100 crore,” Assem Gupta, Principal Secretary, Relief and Rehabilitation told The Indian Express on Monday.

Maharashtra has seen over 1,42,000 deaths due to Covid-19 including 19,000 in Pune district.

The state government began disbursing Rs 50,000 ex-gratia each to kin of Covid-19 victims following a Supreme Court ruling in September. The top court had first directed the Centre to pay Rs 50,000 ex-gratia compensation to families of Covid victims. After this, the apex court approved the Centre’s guidelines regarding the payment of compensation. The guidelines envisage payment of ex-gratia to those who died at home or in hospital within 30 days of being tested positive for Covid. The families of Covid patients who died by suicide will also be eligible for the compensation. The Centre then asked the states to prepare software and invite applications with relevant documents from families who lost members to Covid-19.

Around 1.65 lakh applications for ex-gratia were received across the state, said Gupta. “We are still going through the applications. Some of the families have sent more than one applications. That’s why the number of applications received is much more than the total death count due to Covid in the state,” he said.

“We are playing a pro-active role in this. There are still some families who are not aware of the government relief. Though we have a list of those who died of Covid which is helping us to quickly process such applications, we are also reaching out to those who are neither not aware or have difficulties in making the applications,” he added.

Gupta said the work of processing the applications is done at the district collectorate and at the level of civic bodies. “Resident deputy collectors for the collectorate and medical officers of health for civic bodies are looking after the applications. If everything is order, the relief is distributed in five days. Even otherwise, the apex court has set a deadline of 30 days from the date of application to disburse the ex-gratia amount,” the principal secretary said.

Pune RDC Himmant Kharade said they have so far approved applications of 1800 families. “The amount of compensation is cleared by the state government,” he said. Pune has registered over 19,000 deaths and officials have so far received 16,000 applications.

Meanwhile, Gupta denied reports that those alive figure in the list of Covid-19 fatalities. “No, it is wrong to say that those who are alive are being included in the list of dead. Some technical error has occured in this and we are looking into it,” he said.

Gupta said even if the death certificate of a victim does not mention that he or she died due to Covid but that individual was tested positive and died within 30 days of being tested, her family will be paid the compensation.

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