Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat on Monday termed Congress leader Rahul Gandhi remarks over the issue of insurance cover for health workers in the country as “fake news”. “Government of India (GOI), you are utterly ungrateful,” Gandhi said in a tweet, citing a media report claiming that India’s health workers are left without government insurance cover as the second wave of COVID-19 hits the country.
The Union Health Ministry has announced that all claims of “COVID warriors” under the Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package, which was launched in March last year in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic, will be settled till April 24, after which a fresh insurance policy for them will become effective.
However, the health ministry in a tweet on Sunday had already clarified stating that a new dispensation will be provided to cover the “corona warriors”. For this, the ministry is in talks with the New India Assurance, it said.
Government sources referred to the ministry’s tweet from yesterday and accused Rahul Gandhi of indulging in petty politics without fact-checking information. Union Minister and BJP leader Gajendra Singh Shekhawat termed Rahul Gandhi’s post on Twitter, as “Fake News Alert!!”
“Two hundred and eight seven claims have been paid by the insurance company so far. The scheme has played a crucial psychological role in boosting the morale of the health workers fighting COVID-19,” the ministry said in a statement. “The Pradhan Mantri Garib Kalyan Package (PMGKP) insurance policy claims of COVID warriors will continue to be settled till 24th April 2021, thereafter a fresh insurance policy for COVID warriors will become effective,” it said.
The PMGKP was announced in March last year and was extended thrice till April 24 this year. It was launched to provide a safety net to the health workers to ensure that in case of any adversity due to COVID-19, their families are taken care of. An insurance cover of Rs 50 lakh is provided under the PMGKP scheme.