MORE OF PENSIONS …Three crore small-time traders to get pension alongside 14crore farmers


NEW DELHI: Three crore small-time traders and shopkeepers across the country would be brought into the welfare net and provided Rs 3,000 per month as monthly pension by the Union Government. A decision to this effect was taken at the first cabinet meeting of the new NDA government, chaired by Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the PMO here on Friday. 

The cabinet also decided to widen the scope of the Kisan Pension Scheme announced by the first Modi government in its last Budget. Now, as per Friday’s decision, there would be no constraints or limits of the area of land a farmer has, and all farmers will be entitled to the Rs 6,000 annual pension, which will be distributed in three installments.Over 14crore farmers will get this benefit.

An outlay of Rs 75,000 crore had been made in the last Budget for the Kisan pension scheme. An additional governmental expense of 12,000 crore will need be earmarked for the pensions now, the Cabinet meet noted. An offer to include all farmers in the pension scheme had been made in the BJP’s manifesto for the polls. 

The original plan was to cover 12crore farmers. Now, the number would rise to 14.5crore. To get the benefit, each beneficiary will have to deposit a small sum to get the scheme starting, with a matching amount to be deposited in the account by the government. Those from 18 years to 40 years can join the scheme, and will start getting the pension from age 60 till the end of their life. IHN-NN


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