Aasara pensions: Over 3.15L cases pending in Telangana; widows worst hit

Aasara Pensions was introduced by the Telangana government in 2014 to protect the most vulnerable sections of society and to ensure a secure life with dignity for all the poor.

By Nimisha S Pradeep  Published on  16 Feb 2022 4:01 AM GMT
Aasara pensions: Over 3.15L cases pending in Telangana; widows worst hit

Hyderabad: Over 3.15 lakh Aasara pensions are pending in Telangana for the last three and a half years.

Society for Elimination of Rural Poverty (SERP) data accessed by NewsMeter revealed that 3,15,262 Aasara pensions are pending in the state.

Aasara Pensions was introduced by the Telangana government in 2014 to protect the most vulnerable sections of society and to ensure a secure life with dignity for all the poor.

With this, the monthly pension amount was increased from Rs. 200 to Rs. 1000 for the old aged, widows, weavers, toddy tappers, and AIDS patients and Rs. 500 to Rs. 1500 for disabled persons. From 2020-21, the government had started providing Aasara pension of Rs 2,016 to senior citizens, widows, beedi workers, filaria victims, single women, handloom weavers, toddy tappers, AIDS victims, and Rs. 3,016 for disabled people.

Category wise

The data says that out of the 3,15,262 pending Aasara pensions, 1,59,452 are for widows, 64,749 for Old Age People (OAP), 55,619 for disabled people, 10,997 for single women, 6,351 for toddy tappers, 5,620 for beedi workers, 5,485 for Antiretroviral Therapy (ART) patients, 3,692 for Filaria, and 3,297 for weavers.

District wise

Out of the 33 districts, Hyderabad has the highest number of pending Aasara pensions i.e; 24,974. Besides, 22,555 pending pensions in Nalgonda, 20,251 in Rangareddy, 19,130 in Khammam, 14,053 in Nizamabad, and 13,215 in Medchal Malkajgiri.

In the Old Age Pension (OAP) category, the highest number of pending pensions are in Hyderabad (5400), followed by 4,919 in Rangareddy, and 4,101 in Nalgonda.

In the pensions for widows, the highest pending numbers are in Hyderabad (13,272), followed by Rangareddy (10,991), and Nalgonda (10,490).

In the disabled category, Khammam (4,829) has the highest number of pending pensions, followed by Nalgonda (4,809), and 3,180 in Hyderabad.

Nalgonda has the highest number of pending pensions for toddy tappers i.e; 981, followed by Rangareddy (504), and Suryapet (459).

In the weavers' category, the highest number of pending pensions are in Nalgonda (477), Jagtial (429), and Warangal (380).

The highest pending pensions for beedi workers are in Medak (1,747), followed by Siddipet (1,522), and 620 in Nizamabad.

In the pensions for single women, Hyderabad has the highest number of pending pensions i.e; 2,054, Nizamabad has 698, and Khammam has 693.

For Antiretroviral Therapy patients, pending pensions are the highest in Hyderabad (1,057), followed by Mahabubnagar (754), and Nalgonda (510).

Among the patients suffering from Filaria, Suryapet has the highest number of pending pensions-508. 494 pensions are pending in Nalgonda and 354 pending in Jangaon.

Rythu Swarajya Vedika (RSV), which conducted a survey about farmers who committed suicide, revealed that many pension cases were pending.

In February 2021, Raghu of RSV filed an RTI on the pending pension cases in the state. "The government has now increased the pension amounts, has made more people eligible but it is disturbing when even the minimum amount is not properly disbursed, especially during a time like the pandemic. One major issue is that budgetary allocation for pensions is not increased. Moreover, since 2018 (elections), the government has stopped sanctioning new pensions," says Sreeharsha Thaneeru, a volunteer of RSV.

In July 2021, the government had reduced the pension eligibility age from 62 to 57. "But now, the GO regarding the same is not available on the website. More eligible pending cases would be there in that case," adds Sreeharsha.

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