Karwar: Although over two years have gone by since Premanand Mahale of Nandanagadda lost his brother, he is still running from pillar to post for Rs 5,000 due to him under the Anthya Samskara Sahaya Nidhi programme that provides financial assistance to BPL families to perform the last rites of their loved ones.
When the project was launched in 2006 by the JD(S)- BJP government, Rs 1,000 was provided to BPL families, but the amount was increased to Rs 5000 by the Siddaramaiah government in 2015.
The money, however, seems like a mirage to thousands of families, who are still waiting for it even years after performing the last rites of their dead. In Uttara Kannada alone the government has to pay a sum of Rs 2.47 crore to 4,952 BPL families under the programme, according to Janashakthi Vedike president, Madhav Nayak, who was approached by Premanand Mahale for help. “At first I thought it was an individual case. But when I contacted the officials concerned they told me that several families had a similar problem. I later learnt that the government has not paid 4,952 families over the last two or three years and the total amount pending is now Rs 2.47 crore," Mr Nayak said, speaking to the Deccan Chronicle.
Pointing out that the money was supposed to be released before the last rites were performed, he deplored that families were waiting to get it even several years after the death of their loved ones.
“The programme has lost its meaning," he regretted. Mr Nayak also revealed that many BPL families had not been paid the Rs 20,000 due to them under the National Social Assistance Scheme should their breadwinner die.
Uttara Kannada deputy commissioner ,S S Nakul claimed the district had not received enough funds under both projects and this was true of other districts too....