CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan announces worker welfare measures, advance pension, home delivery of medicines
Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan on Wednesday announced that all Below Poverty Line (BPL) families would be provided a month’s ration free, in view of the lockdown. Mr. Chouhan further said ₹1,000 would be provided to labourers as support through the State Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Board. Mr. Chouhan also announced ₹2,000 for two months to each Saharia, Baiga and Bharia family. Moreover, old age and social security pensioners would receive an advance amount of ₹1,200 for two months.
“Coronavirus is not a deadly disease if precautions are taken. We have all the medical facilities. Whether at private or government-run hospitals, treatment for the disease will be provided free,” he said. “Payments to private hospitals will be done based on rates prescribed under the Ayushman Bharat Yojana.”
“As schools are closed, food items meant for children under the midday meal scheme can be collected from the public distribution system ration stores,” he said.
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Even for daily wage workers and students, the government would arrange for food packets, he added. “I want to appeal to social workers that we need to arrange for food for students stranded in different cities and the poor, too,” he said.
Mr. Chouhan asserted that the government would not let there be a shortage of essential goods. “I have held a meeting with District Collectors and Superintendents of Police in this regard and given them directions,” he said.
As regards farmers, he said owing to the harvest seasons, threshers and harvesters had been allowed to operate. “And, of course, drivers will be screened for the disease too. My appeal to even villagers is to not step out.”
For the home delivery of medicines, he said, the government had deployed vehicles from all departments. “Remember, all kinds of cold, cough and fever are not due to coronavirus,” he said.
Pointing to reports of doctors and nurses being asked to vacate their apartments by landlords, he said this would not be allowed and action would be taken. “Selling anything over the MRP (maximum retail price) is also prohibited and we will take strict action against those who indulge in it,” he said.
The only way to contain the disease, he said, was to break the chain of contact. “Let’s not be scared but fight the disease,” the CM said.
Mr. Chouhan also said he had donated a month’s salary to the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund to contribute towards combating the virus’ spread.
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