The newly-added category-IV of ongoing Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme to provide financial assistance to those who have lost their livelihoods as a result of the outbreak of coronavirus in Pakistan would start Monday (May 18).
Till Friday, more than 3.4 million applications were registered at the Prime Minister's Labour Portal. The application forms for the category-IV of Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme can be accessed from the Prime Minister's Office's official website, according to Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division.
Under Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme, Rs144 billion are being spent to provide Rs12,000 each to 12 million deserving families. Each family eligible for financial assistance under this programme has been/is being given one-time payment of Rs12,000 on the basis of four-monthly assistance of Rs 3,000 per month.
Till May 14, according to the data issued by Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety Division, Rs 54.67 billion were distributed since April 9 among 4,433,053 beneficiaries of the Kifaalat Programme under category-I of Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme.
Under category-II, Rs 36.57 billion have been distributed among 3,047,802 beneficiaries identified through Short Messaging Service (SMS). Under Category III, Rs 9.81 billion have been distributed among 817,816 beneficiaries identified through the district administrations concerned.
The distribution of cash under category II and III is ongoing.
Moreover, till May 14, Rs 101.622 billion were distributed among 8,298,671 deserving beneficiaries under Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme.
Out of them, Rs 43.2814 billion were distributed among 3,559,788 beneficiaries in Punjab, Rs 31.2426 billion among 2,585,982 beneficiaries in Sindh, Rs 19.2136 billion among 1,558,532 beneficiaries in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Rs 4.6446 billion among 379,940 families in Balochistan, Rs 1.6017 billion among 128,289 beneficiaries in the Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK), Rs 0.6972 billion among 54,763 beneficiaries in the Gilgit-Baltistan (GB), and Rs 0.3811 billion among 31,377 beneficiaries in the Islamabad Capital Territory (ICT), as of May 14.
The federal cabinet has earmarked a total of Rs 200 billion to financially support the deserving population affected by lockdown measures taken by the federal government to stop the spread of coronavirus including Rs 144 allocated for Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme. The remaining Rs 56 billion have been allocated as a standby arrangement to financially support the labour class in case the number of those seeking assistance under Ehsaas Emergency cash Programme exceed 12 million.
The federal government has also launched Ehsaas Emergency Cash Transfers initiative that aims to provide financial assistance mainly to labourers and other deserving population who have lost their livelihood in the backdrop of the rapid spread of coronavirus across the country.