Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi on Wednesday wrote a letter to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and urged him to implement his previous order of disbursing ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh to the kin of those who died due to COVID-19.
On 11th September 2021, the Government of India submitted a detailed affidavit in Supreme Court mentioning that it will pay Rs.50,000 as ex-gratia to the families of those affected by the Covid-19 pandemic through the SDRF (State Disaster Response Fund). Under the NDMA (National Disaster Management Authority). the compensation amount is shared by the Centre and State in 75%-25% respectively.
However, CM Channi requested the prime minister to increase the compensation amount saying mere Rs 50000 compensation is insufficient. He added that his government is ready to contribute our 25% share under this scheme.
Wrote letter to PM Modi & urged him to implement his previous order of disbursing ex-gratia of Rs 4 lakh to the kin of those who died due to COVID. I feel, mere Rs 50000 compensation is insufficient. My Govt is ready to contribute our 25% share under this scheme: Punjab CM pic.twitter.com/9jIyfUJ2WT— ANI (@ANI) November 24, 2021
The chief minister in his letter wrote the Government in its response to the Supreme Court has argued that giving 4 lakh compensation would leave the state with insufficient capital to deal with COVID-19. "While the government continues to collect taxes through rising petrol prices and provide tax relaxation to corporates, but denied such relief to the citizens, he added.
"We demand that the Central Government implements its earlier order notified on date 14th March, 2020, (33-4/2020-NDM-1) issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, where the government made a commitment to disburse ex-gratia payment of Rs.4 lakh per deceased. The Central Government later revised this notification and reduced the ex-gratia payment to Rs.50,000.
He highlighted, "We feel at such times of distress it is imperative that special consideration should be made to fulfill the earlier commitment of 4 lakhs by the Government."
"We understand that the SDRF norms require 75% of the 4 lakh which is 3 lakh to be paid by the Central Government and remaining 25%, which is 1 lakh, to be the share of the state. We commit to uphold the state share of the 4 lakh ex gratia payment," the CM said.
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