As a sequel to the endeavours of the Omar led coalition government of providing succour to militancy victims besides supporting accident sufferers and other naturally disabled, Minister for Social Welfare, Sakina Itoo, and Minister of State for Health, Shabir Ahmad Khan distributed orthotic -prosthetic aids and appliances among 100 beneficiaries of Rajouri district under AIDP besides giving cheques under NFBS and other pension schemes.The Ministers handed over wheel chairs, tricycles and hearing aids to the beneficiaries at a camp organised by J&K Rehabilitation Council in conjunction with Union Ministry for Social Justice and Empowerment.Aimed to create awareness about communal harmony, relief and rehabilitation of militancy hit victims; the camp was also supported by National Foundation for Communal Harmony, New Delhi.
Speaking on the occasion, the Minister said that the purpose behind organising such camps is to facilitate the beneficiaries to get the benefits of different SWD schemes at their doorsteps.Sakina appreciated State Rehabilitation Council for reaching out to the poor and under privileged sections of the society through a well-knit plan and a dedicated team of officers. She asked the officers to ensure that the injured persons in border shelling and mine blasts are also covered under these rehabilitation programmes. “Coordinated efforts of Rehabilitation Council, Social Welfare Department and Non-Governmental Organizations coupled with right strategies would certainly help in mitigating the hardships and sufferings of militancy hit and other needy people”, the Minister maintained. Sakina elucidated the landmark accomplishments of the government under Chief Minister Omar Abdullah especially in the SWD, saying that the Chief Minister is himself monitoring the overall functioning of the department and is keen to ensure that no one is deprived of his share irrespective of caste or creed. She said that for the first time 70,000 cases have been sanctioned for the state under ISSS, besides the marriage assistance to orphan girls and young widows has been enhanced from Rs. 10,000 to Rs. 20,000. Efforts are also being made to increase the pension to militancy victims from Rs. 750 to Rs. 1,000 besides clearing pendency under IGNOAP. She said that the uncovered far-flung areas would soon be brought under the ambit of Anganwari centres.She said that the government also started e-tendering in nutrition distribution so that a healthy and hygienic diet is provided to the children being nurtured in Anganwari Centres.
The Minister also highlighted other reformative steps initiated by the government to empower the people especially those belonging to rural and hilly pockets of the state saying that introduction of revolutionary measures like PSG Act, RTI, Accountability Commission, holding of panchayat elections after a gap of over three decades speaks about the sincerity of the government in keeping its promise of ensuring good governance. Sakina also appealed the gathering, comprising thousands of women of the district, to take a pledge to save the girl child as they have the strength and vitality for eradicating such social evils from the society. She stressed on attitudinal change in the society towards social evils like female feticide, describing it as an unforgiveable crime. Meanwhile, Shabir Khan also interacted with the beneficiaries and enquired about their demands and problems as well.Director Social Welfare, Jammu M.H. Bhatti, elaborated upon the departmental schemes while Director Tribal Affairs, Ali Raza spoke about programmes of his department.Executive Director, Rehabilitation Council, Hafiza Muzzaffar, highlighted schemes of the Council and said that proposals for providing more such services to the people have been submitted to the Government and are expected to be sanctioned this year. She said that demand of motorized tricycles for hilly parts is also under consideration of the government.Former MP, Mirza Abdul Rashid, Secretaries of different boards also spoke on the occasion.