Children orphaned by COVID-19 to get free education in Odisha

Bhubaneswar: Children orphaned by deadly COVID-19 in Odisha will get education free of cost as the state Government will bear all expenses, informed Women and Child Development Department Advisor Sulata Deo here today.

The COVID orphaned children will be included in the Green Passage Scheme of the state Government for the benefits, she added.

Introduced in May, 2016, the scheme was earlier implemented to provide free higher education to orphans. Under the scheme, the Government bears the cost of admission, tuition, examination and hostel accommodations of the beneficiaries.

Currently, orphan kids are being provided with Rs 2000 pension. Plans are afoot  to extend the benefit to children, who lost their parents to COVID-19, Deo said.

Meanwhile, Social Security and Empowerment of PwDs Minister Ashok Panda said  children orphaned by COVID-19 will be included in Madhu Babu Pension Yojana. So far, the department has received a list of 35 such children.

Besides, women who lost their husbands to the virus will also be included in the scheme, the Minister said adding that the beneficiaries will receive the pension for three months in advance-June, July and August. Officials concerned have been asked to ensure that the beneficiaries receive the cash at their doorsteps.

Panda further said the state Government has planned to rehabilitate beggars in Sambalpur, Puri and Bhubaneswar.

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