The pandemic clearly has not been kind to several households. However, it has been severely unkind to many children who have ended up as orphans, as the contagion took their parents under its lethal wings. And while this can be very unfortunate for those children, governments are trying their best to offer these orphans a chance to create a life for themselves. First in line happens to be the Uttarakhand government who has launched the Uttarakhand Mukhyamantri Vatsalya Yojana 2021.

About the scheme

The Uttarakhand government has announced the Uttarakhand Mukhyamantri Vatsalya Yojana 2021, a scheme designed to specifically help Covid-19 orphans across the state. Through the implementation of the scheme, the state government will take care of the children who have lost their parents or the sole earning member of the family to this deadly virus.

The state government will make arrangements for the education and training of these children till they reach 21 years of age. Under the implementation of the scheme, the state government will offer an amount of ₹3,000 per month to each child who has become an orphan due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In addition to this monetary benefit, the district magistrates have also been asked to ensure that their share of the ancestral property is not sold till they turn adults.  Orphaned children will be provided with 5% horizontal reservation in the Uttarakhand government jobs.

Help offered to orphans in different states

Several states and Union Territories including Andhra Pradesh, Punjab and Delhi, among several others have started similar schemes – intending to make help accessible to children who have had their lives turned upside down due to the onset of the pandemic. Even in Uttar Pradesh, Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath also announced that his government will take full responsibility for those children who have lost their parents during the second, deadlier wave of COVID-19 in Uttar Pradesh.

Disposal of biomedical waste to contain COVID-19 wave

With the onset of the pandemic, there has been an upward surge of biomedical waste, which, if not handled well, will do more harm than the disease itself. The state government has stressed the need for proper disposal of biomedical waste in these trying times. There need to be proper provisions in place to prevent black marketing of essential items and compliance to norms like wearing masks at all times when outdoors and social distancing should followed strictly.

Wrapping it up

Children have especially been on the wrong end of the crisis, as they have had their academics and household problems to deal with. And while those who have constant financial backing can make do with the resources available, those without parents will find it unimaginably difficult to get by. This intervention by the government is a response to cries for help, and it will go a long way in helping children get through these tough times. Through collective support and help from people and governments, such unfortunate crises can be mitigated, if not completely erased.


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