The government on Saturday announced measures to help families who have lost earning member due to COVID-19, including providing pension to such families.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi chaired a meeting on the issue and said the government stands in solidarity with such families, and efforts are being made to mitigate financial difficulties that may be faced by them, a release from the Prime Minister's Office (PMO) said.
"To help family live a life of dignity and maintain a good standard of living, benefit of ESIC (Employees State Insurance Corporation) pension scheme for employment related death cases is being extended to even those who have died due to Covid," the release said.
Dependent family members of such persons will be entitled to the benefit of pension equivalent to 90 per cent of average daily wage drawn by the worker as per the existing norms. This benefit will be available retrospectively with effect from March 24, 2020 and for all such cases till March 24, 2022.
Besides, the government has also enhanced and liberalised insurance benefits under the Employees' Deposit Linked Insurance Scheme (EDLI) of Employees Provident Fund Organisation (EPFO). "Apart from all other beneficiaries, this will in particular help the families of employees who have lost their lives due to COVID," the release said.
While maximum insurance benefit has been increased from Rs 6 lakh to Rs 7 lakh, the provision of minimum insurance benefit of Rs 2.5 lakh has been restored and will apply retrospectively from February 15, 2020 for the next three years, it added.
"To benefit families of contractual/casual workers, the condition of continuous employment in only one establishment has been liberalised, with benefit being made available to families of even those employees who may have changed jobs in the last 12 months preceding his death," the release said.