Speech of Thiru O. Panneerselvam, Hon’ble Deputy Chief Minister, Government of Tamil Nadu, presenting the Budget for the year 2019-2020 to the Legislative Assembly on 8th February, 2019.
For Persons with Disabilities (Differently abled) – Tamil Nadu budget 2019-2020
This Government provides a monthly pension of Rs.1,000 to all pensioners under the categories of old age persons, differently abled persons, destitute women, widows, transgenders, etc. As on date, 29.47 lakh beneficiaries are receiving social security pensions. This Government distributed sarees and dhoties on the eve of Deepavali and for Pongal, to eligible social security pensioners free of cost. In the Budget Estimates 2019-2020, a sum of Rs.3,958 crore has been provided for social security pensions. (section 13)
The Tamil Nadu Shelter Fund has been registered with SEBI and has been set up to attract domestic and global investors providing Social Impact Investment’. This fund would be deployed to create environment friendly, quality affordable housing for sale to the poor and middle class families. The fund will also be used to set up affordable hostel facilities for working women to address their needs for good quality affordable and safe accommodation and affordable assisted living facilities for senior citizens and the differently abled. The World Bank has evaluated this fund and is likely to provide seed investment. The National Housing Bank is the knowledge partner and has been approached to invest Rs.500 crore in the fund. (section 66)
Tamil Nadu is one of the pioneering States in implementing the Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act 2016 and a State fund with a corpus of Rs.10 crore has been constituted for the welfare of the differently abled persons. The margin money subsidy was enhanced from Rs.10,000/- to Rs.25,000/- in 2018-2019 to encourage self-employment of differently abled persons. In order to facilitate independent mobility of the differently abled persons, the Government is providing hi-tech assistive devices such as special wheel chairs for persons affected by muscular dystrophy, persons with spinal cord injury and persons with cerebral palsy. Retrofitted scooters are also being provided to persons with locomotive disability. Considering the additional requirement, allocation in 2019-2020 will be suitably enhanced to distribute 3,000 special wheel chairs and 3,000 retrofitted scooters. Further, behind-the-ear hearing aids for the hearing impaired and smart canes to facilitate mobility of the visually impaired are also being distributed. In the Budget Estimates 2019-2020, Rs.572.19 crore has been allocated for the Welfare of differently abled persons (section 129)