The elderly people who became physically disabled will get their allocated allowances delivered at home through a new mechanism the government is planning to develop, officials said yesterday.
There is also another plan to launch a social life insurance scheme to help the elderly people, they told a roundtable organised by Bangla daily Prothom Alo, and National Forum for Social Protection with support from Manusher Jonno Foundation (MJF) and UK Aid. The programme was held at the newspaper's office in the capital.
Speaking on the occasion, Director General of Department of Social Welfare Nurul Kabir said the government had almost completed building a database of the elderly people who were getting old age allowances.
The old people will not have to face hassles because government representatives will deliver the allowances at their home through a cash machine, which would contain the database, he said.
Lawmaker Habibe Millat, a member of the parliamentary standing committee on the social welfare ministry, said the government was currently running 145 social safety-net programmes, and around 31 lakh elderly people got the old age allowance.
Eligible persons often miss the allowance because most of the elderly people in the country do not know their actual age, he said.
Commending the allowance-distribution programme, MJF Executive Director Shaheen Anam said if the authorities fixed its drawbacks, the elderly people would be benefited more.
Prof MM Akash of Dhaka University suggested that the elderly could make a list of themselves on their own and submit it to the authorities concerned. This technique can make the process transparent, he said.
Prothom Alo Associate Editor Abdul Quayum, Wave Foundation Chief Executive Director Mohsin Ali, RIC Executive Director Abul Hasib Khan, National Development Programme Executive Director Mohammad Alauddin, and Coast Trust Executive Director Rezaul Karim Chowdhury, also spoke, among others.