The brutal pandemic has uprooted the lives of millions of people across the globe and brought in massive destruction to humanity. According to government data, around 4,46,368 covid deaths have befallen India. In order to help the aggrieved families which lost their dear ones, the Central government, on September 22, directed the State governments to pay an ex gratia of ₹50,000 to these families.
This ex gratia that the State governments need to give, will get the required funds from their respective disaster response funds and the District Disaster Management Authority or the district administrations will be directing those funds, the Central government mentioned in an affidavit submitted to the SC.
Some Indian states including Bihar, Madhya Pradesh and Delhi have already announced compensation for families who lost their members to the pandemic.
“The ex gratia assistance…will continue to be provided for deaths that may occur in the future phases of the COVID-19 pandemic as well, or until further notification,” the Centre’s affidavit said. “Compensation will be given to families of even those deceased who were involved in Covid relief operations or associated in preparedness activities…The cause of death needs to be certified as COVID-19 in accordance with Health Ministry guidelines.”
The concerned families can claim their ex gratia through a form that the state authorities will be providing. They also need to submit certain documents that certify the cause of death. The district disaster management authorities will make sure that the process of claiming the amount is robust and transparent. “All claims must be settled within 30 days of submission of the required documents, and disbursed through the Aadhaar-linked direct benefit transfer procedures,” the Centre’s affidavit said.
District-level committees consisting of Additional District Collector, Chief Medical Officer of Health (CMOH), Additional CMOH or the Principal or Head of Department of Medicine at a Medical College (if one exists in the district), and a subject expert will be in charge of any grievances that may arise. “In case the decision of the committee is not in favour of the claimant, a clear reason for the same shall be recorded,” the affidavit said.
Meanwhile, India has recorded 31,382 fresh Covid cases and the active caseload amounts to 3,00,162.