Nitish govt to build 139 shelter homes in Bihar for old age citizens: Minister

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Patna, Mar 15 (PTI) The Bihar government is going to open 'Ashray-sthals' (shelter homes) for old age people at 139 places across the state, Social Welfare department minister Madan Sahni said in the legislative assembly on Monday.

Seeting up of shelter homes for the elderly citizens is part of 'Saat nischay-2' conceived by chief minister Nitish Kumar as part of good governance, he said.

Replying to the House debate on the budgetary demand of Rs Rs 8159.15 crore of his department for the 2021-22 fiscal, Sahni said within one-and-a-half months of government formation, it has taken measures to build shelter homes.

He,however, did not specify the time frame when they would be opened.

Stating that the department of social welfare came into existence in the year 2007, Sahni said there were 12.30 lakh pensioners during 2007-08 which has now (2021) increased to 94.59 lakh.

Under 'Mukhya Mantri Vridhjan Yojana', 25 lakh people have been benefitted by the scheme, he said adding that these people are getting pension amount of Rs 400 per month directly in their bank accounts.

'Irrespective of poor and rich, BPL or APL, we will be bringing every old age people above 60 years to give them the benefit of the scheme,' the minister said.

Talking about his departments achievement, he said that the government transferred three months of pension amounting to Rs 1025.77 crore directly into the bank accounts of 85 lakh beneficiaries during coronavirus pandemic in the state.

'This shows our governments commitment towards the poor people of the state,' Sahni said.

Replying to a debate on Building Construction departments budgetary demand of Rs 5321.40 crore for fiscal 2021-22, its minister Ashok Choudhary said that the state government has undertaken umpteen numbers of mega projects that included- Gardanibagh housing scheme, Mahabodhi Convention Kendra, forestry collge at Munger,renovation and modernisation of Patna museum.

Bihar Sadan at New Delhi, renovation of Vishweshwaraiya Bhawan and Vikas Bhawan at Patna (secretariat buildings), Bapu Tower, Examination Centre, Patna, state sports academy-cum- international modern cricket stadium at Rajgir, Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Science City, Patna, Buddha Samyak Darshan Sangrahalaya and Smriti Stupa at Vaishali etc are among the buildings, the construction for which are currently underway, Choudhary said.

Choudhary also announced that the department has completed construction of nine buildings of engineering colleges at Saharsa, Sasaram, Sitamarhi, Mdhepur, Gopalganj, Araria, Kaimur, Begusarai and Purnea while the construction work of 16 other engineering college buildings are going in on full swing and is expected to be completed by the end of December 2021.

Similarly, the department has also undertaken the construction of several buildings for ITI, Women ITI, Polytechnic colleges and other institutions, he said.

Later, the House passed the budgetary demands for Social Welfare department and Building Construction department by voice vote amid walk out by the entire opposition expressing dissatisfaction with the two ministers reply.

The House also rejected the 'cut motion' moved by Congress member Vijay Shankar Dubey. PTI AR SNS SNS