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On the approval of the federal government, the National Database and Registration Authority (NADRA) offices resumed operations across the country to facilitate beneficiaries of the Ehsaas Emergency Cash programme who were facing problems in withdrawing cash due to faulty biometric identification and registration of deaths of eligible family members.
To get first-hand information about the facilitation being extended to Ehsaas beneficiaries by the NADRA, the special assistant to the prime minister on social protection and poverty alleviation and head of Ehsaas Programme Dr Sania Nishtar paid a surprise visit to the NADRA registration and facilitation center in Islamabad.
Chairman NADRA Usman Yousaf Mobin was also present at the occasion.
Last month, the NADRA had shut down its offices nationwide to avoid long queues of people that could lead to the spread of the virus.
Some people in the field who were facing problems in their payment identifications had appealed for the opening of the NADRA offices as the Ehsaas Emergency Cash is being disbursed based on their registration through the CNICs.
Talking to the media and beneficiaries present at the NADAR center, Dr Nishtar said "Ehsaas is trying to ensure that Ehsaas Emergency Cash reaches out to those in need as early as possible."
She said that, "Ehsaas is grateful to the NADRA for reopening its offices for Ehsaas Emergency Cash beneficiaries. I am impressed by the dedication of NADRA's officials and precautionary measures being taken for the safety of people."
Giving advice to the Ehsaas recipients, she commented, "I would urge people to contact NADRA helplines ('7000' for mobile phone subscribers and '111-786-100' for landline) to enquire relevant information before they come to NADRA offices for seeking facilitation.
Those who have issues relating to biometric verification of thumb impressions can head to the nearest NADRA office and they will be facilitated within 24 hours. Once their biometric identification process is completed, they can contact the nearest BISP offices to get easy withdrawals."
Elaborating the next steps to solve the payment issues with regard to the death registrations of eligible beneficiaries whose deaths were not reported by their families, Dr Nishtar said, "To facilitate beneficiaries who had received messages that either your parent or spouse was eligible whereas a person had died, the government has granted the waiver of Rs50 being charged by NADRA for the cancellation of CNICs of the deceased.
Besides, the timeline for the entire process to resolve the biometric identification and death registrations has been squeezed from seven days to 24 hours to provide easy solutions. People are advised to bring the death certificate from their union councils before for death registrations at NADRA offices."
As soon as the identification and death registration process is finalized, people should contact BISP offices in their tehsils for easy payments.
They should wait for the final payment notification on their phones from Ehsaas before turning up at payment sites.
Alongside that, in order to benefit maximum number of beneficiaries facing issue in payments, the valid Computerised National Identity Cards (CNICs) of eligible beneficiaries that got expired have also been granted an automatic extension till July 2020.
According to instructions issued on the resumption of operations, the NADRA offices will remain open from 10am to 4pm Monday to Thursday, while Friday timings will be from 10am to 1pm.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020