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PCMC to provide Rs 3000 to rickshaw drivers, hawkers, domestic help, barbers, bus drivers

The financial assistance will be provided to those who hold a licence, such as rickshaw drivers and hawkers, or those registered with the PCMC.

Written by Manoj Dattatrye More | Pune |
Updated: April 18, 2021 3:47:55 am
Homeless persons sleep on Bajirao Road as markets remain shut due to the ongoing Covid restrictions in Pune, Saturday. (Express Photo by Pavan Khengre)

The PCMC has decided to extend financial assistance to economically weaker sections of society who will be hit hard by two weeks of the lockdown-like restrictions. The civic administration has decided to provide Rs 3000 each to families of autorickshaw drivers, hawkers, domestic help, barbers, school bus drivers, labourers and gym trainers. The financial assistance will be provided to those who hold a licence, such as rickshaw drivers and hawkers, or those registered with the PCMC.

“The state government has announced two weeks of lockdown to contain the spread of the virus. This will hit those who live hand to mouth. The state government has announced a package that will not benefit economically weaker sections. Therefore, we have decided to pitch in with some financial assistance to the poor, who will otherwise struggle to feed their families,” said Namdev Dhake, BJP House leader in the PCMC, told The Indian Express on Friday.

The BJP is the ruling party in the PCMC and has a majority in the standing committee. On Thursday, it passed a resolution approving the financial assistance to economically weaker sections.

“We will provide financial assistance in 15 days after going through the required process,” Dhake said. Several hawkers are likely to miss the financial assistance being extended by the PCMC as many have not been registered with the civic body. Kashinath Nakhate, president, Kashtakari Sangarsh Mahasangh, said, “The PCMC has failed to conduct a proper survey of hawkers. The zonal offices of the PCMC got the responsibility of conducting the survey. However, they have failed to do so. As a result, over 4,000 hawkers will miss the financial assistance.”

Dhake, however, said, “Though some hawkers may not have been registered, we will ensure that as many as possible get the financial assistance… We will try to accommodate them,” he said.

Welcoming the move, activist Manav Kamble said, “In these bad times, any kind of help would always be welcomed by the poor. The PCMC should ensure that it reaches out to the poor in the best possible way. This should, however, not be used as an election tool as the civic elections are due next year.”

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