PM's announcement will secure future of children orphaned by Covid: Smriti Irani

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New Delhi, May 29 (PTI) Union minister Smriti Irani said on Saturday that Prime Minister Narendra Modi's announcement of a number of welfare measures for children who lost their parents to COVID-19 will ensure they are not deprived of any opportunity and secure their future.

The announcements made by Modi on the eve of his government's second anniversary in its second term included ensuring a corpus of Rs 10 lakh to such children when they turn 18 and providing for their education.

Chairing a meeting to deliberate on steps which can be taken to support such children, he said they will be supported under the 'PM-CARES for Children' scheme.

Hailing the decision, Irani said this will ensure that these children are not deprived of any opportunity.

'Thankful to PM @narendramodi Ji for announcing major measures for protection & empowerment of children who lost their parents to Covid through PM-CARES. This will ensure children are not deprived of any opportunity & will pave the way for a secure future,' the Women and Child Development minister tweeted.

The Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said in a statement that fixed deposits will be opened in the names of such children, and the PM-CARES fund will contribute through a specially designed scheme to create a corpus of Rs 10 lakh for each of them when he or she reaches 18 years of age.

This corpus will be used to give a monthly financial support or stipend from 18 years of age for the next five years to take care of his or her personal requirements during the period of higher education. On reaching the age of 23 years, they will get the corpus amount as one lump-sum for personal and professional use.

For children who are not eligible under the existing scholarship schemes, the PM-CARES will provide an equivalent scholarship, it said. PTI UZM KJ

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