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Gujarat: Govt to help nearly 800 children orphaned due to Covid

The Social Justice & Empowerment Department (SJED) is registering the number of children who have been orphaned due to Covid-19 since March 20, 2020, for disbursing benefits under MBSY.

By: Express News Service | Gandhi Nagar |
Updated: July 6, 2021 12:29:48 am
As per the figures available with SJED till June 30, total 794 children have lost both their parents to Covid-19 across the state.

Nearly 800 children in Gujarat have been orphaned due to Covid-19 in Gujarat and the state government will compensate them under the Mukhyamantri Bal Sahay Yojana (MBSY).

The Social Justice & Empowerment Department (SJED) is registering the number of children who have been orphaned due to Covid-19 since March 20, 2020, for disbursing benefits under MBSY.

As per the figures available with SJED till June 30, total 794 children have lost both their parents to Covid-19 across the state. Rajkot district tops the list with 47 orphan children followed by Bhavnagar and Kutch with 42 children each. Anand district of Central Gujarat stands third in the list with 40 such children.

Under the scheme, a child who lost single surviving parent due to Covid will also be included as a beneficiary.The department has also registered details of 3,106 children who have lost one parent since March 20, 2020, till June 30, 2021, either due to Covid or some other reason. A senior official of SJED said that these children will not be eligible for benefits under the MBSY but they will get benefits under other welfare schemes of the government.

The official said that the government has registered these figures under the Baal Swaraj Portal started by National Commission for Protection of Child Rights. “These children who have lost one or both of their parents to Covid, registered by June 30 by competent government authorities through Baal Swaraj portal. These figures are likely to change with more registrations of such children from various centers in the state.”

The Gujarat government has launched MBSY to provide financial, educational, and health assistance to children orphaned till they turn 24 years of age. Under the scheme, guardian of an orphan child will get Rs 4,000 per month in a joint bank account through direct benefit transfer (DBT). The amount will be available till the child completes the age of 18. Subsequently, if required, the child will get monthly stipend of Rs 6,000 for higher studies up to the age 24. The scheme also provides benefits of many other welfare schemes of the state government to the orphan children on priority basis without taking the income criteria into consideration.

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