The Yogi Adityanath government on Saturday announced a financial package of more than Rs353 crore to give cash handouts to an estimated 3.53 million daily wage earners and labourers, who are likely to be hit due to the coronavirus outbreak.
The beneficiaries include 2.03 million labourers registered with the UP labour department and 1.5 million rickshaw pullers, hawkers and kiosk owners, who will get the money directly into their bank accounts.
The state has also decided to provide free food grains for the months of April and May in advance to more than 8.38 million widow, old age and handicapped pensioners next month.
The 16.53 million beneficiaries enrolled under the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (MNREGS) and Antyodaya in UP would also be paid a month’s free food grain comprising 20 kg and 15 kg of wheat and rice respectively. This would cost the exchequer Rs94.50 crore.
Besides, the government has urged the Centre to sanction Rs556 crore for payment towards the jobs rendered by beneficiaries under the MNREGS.
The chief minister has also urged businesses under the lockdown due to the coronavirus, not to deduct their employees’ wages.