The Delhi government has ordered officials concerned to clear pending applications for pension by senior citizens, widows and differently-abled persons by June end.
The order comes after Delhi Social Welfare Minister Rajendra Pal Gautam conducted surprise inspections across Delhi "to check the status of pension cases" and found that a large number of online applications for financial assistance were pending.
"Applications continue to remain pending for months despite several directions from time to time. The minister has now directed that all pendency be cleared by June end," an official order said.
"All district officers are directed to resolve pendencies in all three financial assistance schemes, including all cases pending at the operator level and applications under objection," it said.
The officers have been directed to submit a compliance report, stating that applications pending up to June 15 have been disposed of, on July 1.
Gautam had earlier ordered an immediate audit of district offices to remove pendency in disbursal of pension to specially-abled persons, widows and the elderly.
During a high-level meeting, the minister had also asked officials to issue a login ID and password to him so that he can himself monitor the status of pension and any pendency in each district.
"The pendency in pension cases is disappointing. I have ordered an immediate audit of all district offices under Social Welfare and Women and Child Development departments. I have also issued directions to fill all vacancies to ensure smooth functioning of offices," Gautam had said.
The minister had also ordered formation of district monitoring committees for both departments which will look after, resolve and monitor all pension cases.
With the COVID-19 pandemic affecting the livelihood of people, the Delhi government had in March doubled the pension amount for five lakh senior citizens, 2.5 lakh widows and 1 lakh differently-abled persons.
The pension amount for widows and differently-abled persons was increased from Rs 2,500 to Rs 5,000. For senior citizens, it was increased from Rs 2,000 to Rs 4,000.