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Now through the Widow Pension Scheme, widowed women will have some financial autonomy at least, and not need to depend so much on others.
Translated from the original in Hindi.
The Vidhwa Pension Yojana was started by the Government of India to provide financial assistance to women who have become widows. Many state governments also provide assistance to the financially poor and destitute widows.
The purpose of the Widow Pension Scheme is to empower widows who may be dependent on family members for their livelihood, and raise their standard of living.
Only a widow of 18 to 60 years who comes below the poverty line can take advantage of this scheme.
The applicant should be above 18, and under -18 widows are unfortunately not covered, as the minimum age for marriage for girls is 18, and the state declares an underage marriage illegal. The widow should also not have remarried after the death of the husband.
Also, if the widow’s children are still minors, or if they are older in age but are not able to take care of their mother, then the woman is eligible to apply. Only the widow herself will get a monthly pension under this scheme and their children or any other family members will not get the benefit after the death of the widow.
This scheme is be valid only till the widow is alive.
The entire amount of pension is directly deposited by the government into the bank account of the beneficiary women, so that no one can steal the money from them. This is the reason why it is mandatory to have a bank account to apply for the scheme, which should be linked to Aadhaar.
The benefit of this scheme will be provided to the economically poor widow women whose age will be 18 to 60 years. But in some states a different age is fixed, like under the Indira Gandhi Widow Pension Scheme, the age should be 40 to 60.
The amount allotted of every state is different.
You can check out the widow pension schemes of various states here and apply online. You can also apply offline by going to the office of your district social welfare department.
Image Source: a still from the film Pagglait
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