The Khasi Disability Association (KDA) today petitioned Chief Minister Conrad K Sangma on the delay in the release of grants for people with disabilities.
The grants include scholarships, book grants, uniform grants, conveyance allowances and unemployment allowances.
Speaking to Highland Post, KDA President Starwin Kharjana said that the association has still not received any response on its many letters inquiring into the grants that are usually released in April and that has forced them to approach the Chief Minister this time.
Several letters have been sent to the concerned authorities since March 20 urging the release of the grants, Kharjana said.
“They initially said that the sanction for the grants had been received and it will be released to the district offices. Then they said that the department is still waiting from the Finance Department for the release of the same and that has put the lives of the person with disabilities that are dependent on this financial assistance in great misery,” he said, adding that the delay can no longer be tolerated.
In May Highland Post inquired about these matters and the Deputy Director of the Social Welfare Department, LM Momin, informed that the department is yet to get the sanction from the state government for the various grants for persons with disabilities for 2019-2020.
He, however, said that this year the sanction for last year’s grants was already approved in the budget and the department will be processing it very soon.
Momin added that the applications are still open for unemployment allowances and scholarship and can be submitted to the district officers as no deadline has been set.
Because of the lockdown and the Covid-19 pandemic the government could not complete the sanction process, Momin said. For this year’s grant, the department is waiting for the proposal to come from the district officers.
“We will be getting both the grants for this current financial year and the last financial year and we will process it immediately,” he assured.