If you know a child who was orphaned due to COVID-19, you can now share his or her details with the government on a web portal and help the child claim benefits under the PM CARES scheme announced earlier.
The website can be accessed at www.pmcaresforchildren.in.
The government introduced the portal to all the States and Union Territories on July 15, 2021, Minister for Women and Child Development Smriti Irani told the Rajya Sabha on Thursday.
“Any citizen can inform the administration regarding a child eligible for support under this scheme through the portal,” Ms. Irani said.
In May, the Prime Minister approved a scheme under the PM CARES fund for children who have lost both parents or the lone surviving parent or a legal guardian or an adoptive parent due to COVID-19.
The scheme provides a corpus of ₹10 lakh to each child when he or she turns 18 years old. This corpus will be used to give a monthly stipend from the age of 18 for the next five years to help with higher education. At the age of 23, the beneficiary will get the entire corpus amount as one lump sum. The government will also help with school education and extend a health insurance cover of ₹5 lakh under the Ayushman Bharat Scheme.
According to an affidavit submitted by the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights before the Supreme Court, 3,621 children were orphaned due to COVID-19 and at least 26,176 had lost a single parent because of the pandemic between April 1, 2020 and June 5, 2021.
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