Jajpur: Beneficiaries of old-age and other pension schemes are being subjected to harassment by block administration officials in Jajpur district, locals have alleged.
The matter came to fore after Joint Secretary of Social Security And Empowerment Of Persons With Disabilities (SSEPD) Department Deepak Routray directed the Jajpur Collector November 16 to conduct a probe into the charges and submit a report to him within a fortnight.
The issue cropped up after Tanushree Mohanty, a native of Barchana block, wrote to the Chief Minister, state Chief Secretary, Secretary SSEPD and Jajpur Collector alleging inordinate delay in disbursal of old-age pensions, November 4.
In her letter, she alleged that every month the beneficiaries are facing issues in receiving their pensions from April. She also said that that the matter was brought to the notice of local authorities but the pleas are yet to be addressed.
Elderly beneficiaries over the age of 80 and 90 years are the worst-hit and made to wait for long hours before they are turned away without being paid their pensions. Mohanty demanded that the authorities should fix a particular date of every month and release the pension of the beneficiaries on that day.
The beneficiaries of old-age pension schemes under Madhu Babu Pension scheme in Barchana block are among the worst-hit. Some of the beneficiaries alleged that they have to make several rounds of the block office to receive their pension on 15th of every month but are turned away on one pretext or other after waiting for long five-six hours.
Notably, the district has over 60,000 beneficiaries receiving old-age pensions, more than 20,000 receiving widow pensions and about 5,000 getting disabled pensions. Locals alleged that the senior officials are encouraging on adoption of 5T principles in discharge of government works but the opposite is being done in disbursal of pensions to the needy.