HYDERABAD: The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) is caught in a fix regarding distribution of Rs 10,000 cash aid to flood-affected families. The state government has asked the corporation to distribute the cash to not only flood-hit families but to all lower income groups and poor in 240 colonies and over 1,800 slums in the city.
The decision has forced the corporation to stop the mass cash distribution programme midway. Once it resumes, officials said, it would be never-ending and continue even after the GHMC polls, which are likely to be held next month. So far, the GHMC has distributed Rs 387.9 crore to 3.87 lakh affected families and is yet to cover over one lakh families.
According to highly placed sources, it would be a cumbersome task for the corporation authorities to distribute cash to all the poor families. Though the corporation had prepared a list of 3.45 lakh flood-affected families in the GHMC area. The government was of the view that ex gratia should also be given to those whose whose income was indirectly affected due to the untimely rainfall.
As on Sunday, the beneficiary list was increased by 1.5 lakh flood-hit families. If the programme continues, the figure of beneficiaries could increase by 11 lakh families in the GHMC area. The government has only sanctioned only `550 crore from the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund to the municipal administration and urban development (MA&UD) department for rescue, relief and rehabilitation programmes in flood affected areas, which will not be sufficient.
A senior GHMC official, on condition of anonymity, said that in order to curb duplication, teams had been drawn from the corporation and the revenue department, accompanied the local corporator, MLA or any representative from residential welfare associations (RWAs). These teams would enter the Aadhaar details and mobile number in to the Latlong (latitude longitude) mobile application where the location of distribution would be geo-tagged.
Once the data is entered, no authority is empowered to make changes. The official said that as of now the corporation will distribute cash to over one lakh flood-affected families and based on the availability of funds the numbers would increase.
Meanwhile, Chief Secretary Somesh Kumar reviewed the distribution of cash on Sunday. The meeting decided to once again take up distribution of cash to all eligible beneficiaries.
In this regard, the Chief Secretary directed MA&UD principal secretary Arvind Kumar and GHMC commissioner D.S. Lokesh Kumar to prepare a schedule for distribution of cash relief in all affected localities and at the doorstep of those who have not been paid till date.