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Elderly Bihar man says records show him dead, denied benefits

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Press Trust of India Araria (Bihar)
A physically challenged octogenarian, residing in a remote village of the district, has alleged he has been denied benefits of social security schemes, as official records maintain that he is "dead".
Mohd Darban, 83, a resident of Farsadangi village under Jokihat block, who lost his left arm and leg to polio, was in for a shock when he learnt that doles under the Indira Awas Yojana and pensions for the elderly could not be claimed by him, since official records mentioned he died long back.
Darban alleged this was the result of bungling by members of the panchayat under which his village falls, and the mukhiya and his cohorts might have manipulated the records, so that the benefits he was being deprived of could go to some of their "favourites".
The hapless man said he has been running from pillar to post with documents like bank passbook and identity proofs to convince officials that he was, indeed, "alive".
"I am not aware of this anomaly, since I am not in receipt of any written complaint from the aggrieved party. However, since our attention has been drawn to the matter, we will look into the same," Jokihat Block Development Officer Mohd Sharafat Hussain said.
District Magistrate, Araria, Himanshu Sharma said, "If an alive person is being told by officials that he is dead, then there must have been a death certificate issued in his name. However, issuing a fake death certificate is a very serious matter and authorities at the appropriate level would look into the reported matter.

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First Published: Jan 30 2019 | 4:55 PM IST

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