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Govt steps up relief, welfare measures

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JAMMU: The Administrative Council, in its latest meeting on Wednesday approved a relief package of Rs. 350 crore for various categories of people affected by the Covid-19 pandemic and lockdown. The meet was held under the Chairmanship of the Lieutenant Governor G C Murmu.
“We are conscious of the fact that the lockdown has led to hardships to a number of people. The UT administration under the directions of the LG has been implementing a number of welfare measures for labourers, workers, destitute etc,” Principal Secretary, Planning, Development & Monitoring and Information, Rohit Kansal said.
He gave a detailed breakup of relief being provided under different categories.
Under Income Support category, the government has earmarked Rs 46.40 crore to provide Rs 1000, per month, for three months to a varied class of workers.
It includes Rs 35.2 crore to around 1.76 lakh construction workers; Rs 1.8 crore to Houseboat and Shikarawalas registered with Toursim Department (number-5791); Rs 8.1 crore to Tourist Guides/ Ponywalas/ Palkiwalas/Pithuwalas registered with SMVDSB/SASB and TDAs ( 27000 in number); Rs 0.255 crore to registered active flower growers (Number 850 out of 7000) and Rs 1.05 crore to Street vendors (Rehriwalas, Phadiwalas, Thelawalahas) registered with SMC/JMC. Construction workers have already been paid for one month through DBT.
Similarly, under Business Support Category Rs 25,000 upfront now (and Rs 75,000 later) would be provided to Balance SHGs in Umeed ( number 30000) and Rs. 25,000 upfront now (and Rs 75,000 later) to Women Entrepreneurs/aggregators through WDC (10000 groups of 60000 women) and Rs 1 lac to Handloom/Handicraft SHGs (20000 SHGs) costing a total of Rs 300 crore.
In addition, he said, the Administrative Council also approved string of administrative measures, which include Renewal/extension of registration certificates for licenses, permits and other statutory clearances beyond 31.03.2020 to 30.06.2020. Levy of fixed component of power charges deferred in respect of all the registered commercial establishments across all the sectors till 30.06.2020.
The AC has also approved formation of a Committee under the Chairmanship of Commissioner/Secretary, Industries and Commerce with Administrative Secretaries/representatives of Finance, Planning & Development, PWD (R&B), Jal Shakti, RDD and other Departments as necessary, to examine pending payments to suppliers from each Department and clear payments to supplies which meet codal formalities. Further the Committee will meet on daily basis to release all pending liabilities, which are clear for payments, by 15.05.2020.

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