Federal Minister for Poverty Alleviation and Social Safety/Chairperson Benazir Income Support Programme (BISP) Ms.Shazia Marri has announced the introduction of a new payment mechanism of disbursement to BISP beneficiaries by giving them an option to receive money in the bank accounts of their choice. Initially, the mechanism will be introduced as pilot in some districts which will be gradually extended to whole of the country.
Federal Minister/Chairperson BISP, Secretary BISP Mr. Yusuf Khan, DGs of NSER & Cash Transfer Mr. Naveed Akbar and Mr Noor Rehman Khan were also present in the press conference.
Ms. Shazia Marri said that since its inception, BISP has experienced various mechanisms, like, Money Order through Pakistan Post, Smart Debt Card, Mobile Phone Banking and currently using the Bio-metric Verification System (BVS). She added that current payment system has limited opportunities for beneficiaries under which they save their money, also there were complaints of deductions by Pause Agents.
She said that in order to make the payment system more beneficiary centric, BISP had series of meetings with the State Bank and other commercial banks, and as a result of last 3-4 months exercise, BISP is now launching a pilot project of a new payment system. She said that this will empower these women, also that these women will receive their funds without standing in queues, and in a dignified manner, and at the same time this will help to maintain transparency.
Chairperson BISP further informed that BISP is launching Dynamic Registry Survery soon to assess the socio-economic status of households on real basis. She said that new Dynamic Registry data will be shock responsive and if any change occurred in the socio economic situation of household, will be recorded on real time basis. She said that the Dynamic Registry desks have been established all across the country to process the new survey of the households.
While commenting on the news of Public Accounts Committee, Federal Minister said,“the procedure of PAC is necessary and crucial for maintain transparency in the system and dispelled the impression that BISP has extended benefits to any government servant by committing any fraud or illegal practice. She criticized the previous government on excluding 820,000 beneficiaries by introducing filters without any research and giving the right of appeal to the excluded beneficiaries.
Ms. Marri disclosed that out of 140,000 government employees, 60% were from grade 1 to 5 having average salary of around Rs13000. She said that these beneficiaries were not given the right to appeal and further cleared that there was no policy in the past to bar government servants from receiving grants from BISP, especially if they were low paid government employees.
Ms. Shazia Marri reiterated that under BISP Taleemi Wazaif Programme 8.1 million children have been enrolled and 364,000 pregnant women and their children of under 2 years age are getting benefits from the BISP’s Nashonuma Programme. She said that BISP has developed a sense of awareness among the people through its various initiatives.
She further said that during recent floods BISP has disbursed Rs. 70 billion among 2.8 flood affected families through its unique database across the country, and thanked the Prime Minister Mian Muhammad Shahbaz Sharif, Foreign Minister Mr. Bilawal Bhutto Zardari and International Community for their continues support to people in these testing times.