From a caste fight to a social cause

From a caste fight  to a social cause

Mammoth meeting being organised to highlightA the plight of the aged and widows Afzal Patan Babu The fight for hike in pension amount for the...

Mammoth meeting being organised to highlightA the plight of the aged and widows Afzal Patan Babu The fight for hike in pension amount for the aged and widows, launched by MRPS (Madiga Reservation Porata Samithi), founder president M Krishna Madiga, has put a new challenge before the government over the issue of providing social security to the needy in the state. While the government claimed that it was providing pension to 60 lakh people (the aged and widows) by paying Rs 500 each every month, the social organizations were demanding to increase the amount to Rs 1000 and bring the remaining 40 lakh eligible persons under the scheme so that they will get some sort of social security. Krishna Madiga, who spearheaded the struggle in grass root level from October 2012, said that the government was unmindful of the demand to cover all deserved people in the pension scheme. The official reports claim that over 80 per cent of the old people and widows were covered under the scheme. The ground reality is otherwise. About 60 per cent are benefitting under the scheme in the state. He said in an interview to The Hans India that the very objective of his struggle was to highlight that over 50 lakh people were still fighting for a square meal a day. Old people and widows have neither social nor economic support in the society. They were the most neglected sections in the state. It was the responsibility of the government to provide security to them. Krishna Madiga said he succeeded in providing Rs 1500 pension to physically challenged and heart surgeries for children free of cost through his unrelented struggles in the last six years and provided a big relief to the needy and the families of the victims. Now, he has launched the struggle to ensure every aged person and widow gets pension and live their remaining life with dignity. To press for the two demands � increase of pension amount to Rs 1000 and cover all eligible in the pension scheme, a mammoth meeting is big organized at Uppal cross roads in the city on April 28 ( Sunday), he said lakhs of eligible people for pension will attend the meeting. The MRPS leader said he conducted 325 meetings in all districts and met octogenarians and widows to study their plights. It is expected that over 5 lakh people will attend the meeting from different districts. In his study, it was found that one among two old people and one among three widows were not covered under the pension scheme in villages. They were deprived of their rights provided under various welfare schemes. They were not provided housing under INDIRAMMA scheme, no benefits reached under Indiramma Abhaya Hastam, no lands were given to widows belonging to SC and ST communities and also not given importance in the allocation of funds in other schemes. Reiterating that he will continue his struggle until the demands were met, Krishna Madiga said many organizations including NGOs, voluntary associations had extended their support to his fight for the rights of old people and widows. It is the responsibility of the government to redress the plights of the poor and take immediate decision on the demands. Stating that he would continue to raise the social problems and issues through struggles, the MRPS leader said he would launch movements on different issues in future. His aim is to provide basic necessities -- food, cloth, good health and education to all the poor by bringing the social issues to the notice of the government through his movements. Without social security, the uplift of the poor was a mirage. He believed that social and economic emancipation of downtrodden would be done through continuous struggles, he added.
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