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As many as Rs 91.611 billion have been distributed to 7.512 million families in one month under Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme with Rs 1.961 billion distributed among 163,419 families in the ongoing third and final phase of the programme.

According to Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division, so far, 2.945 million category 2 beneficiaries have been served Ehsaas Emergency Cash worth Rs 35.347 billion and payments are still ongoing.

Category-2 recipients had applied for financial assistance through SMS service that closed on April 19, 2020 and their eligibility is being ascertained through the databases of the National Socioeconomic Registry 2010 and 2020.

Dr. Sania Nishtar, Special Assistant to the Prime Minister on Poverty Alleviation and Social safety said, the emergency cash transfers are providing purchasing power to labour class to buy food rations and meet their needs.

Payments to category 1 that includes regular Kafaalat beneficiaries have almost been completed with Rs. 54.303 billion paid out to 4.403 million beneficiaries.

Cumulatively, so far, 7.512 million deserving families under categories I, II and III of Ehsaas Emergency Cash program have collected financial assistance of Rs.12,000 each that sums up to roughly Rs. 91.611 billion.

This amount has been disbursed among the daily wagers, piece-rate workers and labourers till May 11, 2020 since the beginning of the payment operation under Ehsaas Emergency Cash Program on April 9.

"Avoiding long queues and overcrowding, Ehsaas has set up more than 10,000 payment sites across the country aiming to facilitate safe and fully biometric payments worth Rs. 144 billion to 12 million deserving families," an official statement said.

According to provincial and regional breakdown available on the online Ehsaas disbursements portal, as of May 11, an amount of Rs.17.229 billion has been distributed among 1.393 beneficiaries of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Rs. 38.498 billion among 3.161 million beneficiaries in Punjab and Rs.29.025 billion among 2.401 million beneficiaries in Sindh.

Till today, an amount of Rs.1.578 billion has been disbursed among 126,414 beneficiaries in Azad Jammu and Kashmir, Rs. 4.277 billion among 349,517 beneficiaries of Balochistan, Rs. 0.649 billion among 50,834 beneficiaries in Gilgit-Baltistan and Rs.0.353 among 29,058 beneficiaries of Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT).

Copyright Business Recorder, 2020