Centre working on packages for those who lost sole breadwinner, orphaned children – The Economic Times

Clipped from: https://economictimes.indiatimes.com/news/india/centre-working-on-packages-for-those-who-lost-sole-breadwinner-orphaned-children/articleshow/82985618.cmsSynopsis

Discussions have been held with stakeholder ministries to ready the package at the earliest, given the huge financial impact such families are facing. Data on these families is already being collated.

With the second Covid-19 wave taking away sole breadwinners of several families and leaving orphaned children in its wake, the Centre is planning two key packages to deal with the double blow.

ET gathers that high-level meetings were held through the last week to plan two separate schemes to address these issues. Announcements regarding the schemes are expected within a week.

In the works is a livelihoods package to households who have lost their primary breadwinner to the virus.

Discussions have been held with stakeholder ministries to ready the package at the earliest, given the huge financial impact such families are facing. Data on these families is already being collated.

Centre Working on Packages for Those Who Lost Sole Breadwinner, Orphaned Children

The details of the package and the rehabilitation of dependent family members will be finalised in a day or two, ET has reliably learnt. The Centre is said to be leaning towards a package that ensures a sustained livelihood avenue for the affected family.

The second key package in the works is for children impacted adversely by the pandemic.
An inter-ministerial meeting was held on Wednesday to work out a ‘comprehensive plan’ for those children left orphaned after both parents succumbed to Covid-19.

The Centre estimates that, so far, about 577 children have lost both their parents to the second wave.

Sources told ET that while the details of the child-specific package are still being worked out, elements under discussion will involve fostering options by like-minded families.

That apart, under discussion are plans for educational grants, linkages with existing scholarship schemes, career guidance and even coaching modules to ensure such a child is professionally settled.

Meanwhile, the women and child development ministry has already swung into action. Child welfare committees have been activated and district collectors have been alerted to mobilise the `10 lakh grant given to each district under the Integrated Child Protection Scheme for non-institutional childcare.

The National Commission for Protection of Child Rights has also stepped in, as has the Union education ministry, to look holistically at all child-specific concerns.

Several states have also begun announcing ex-gratia payments and welfare schemes for both families who have lost their earning member as well as orphaned children.

Political parties have also drawn the Centre’s attention to the financial difficulties such families are faced with. Demands for temporary relief – from loan and utility payments and school fee subsidies – are also being made.

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