People deprived of safety-net benefits17 April 2021
Noman Mosharef :
Barishal Muladi Upazila's Kazirchar Union's 82 years old Hasan Vanu was declared dead in Election Commission' s (EC) update voter list. As a result, she is not getting old age allowances, the government special programme for elderly people to ease their life.
Last four months she moved to different offices of Muladi Upazila to prove herself that she is still alive without getting any outcomes. Hasan Vanu said, my husband had died 30 years ago. I had struggled to survive with my six children. In 2005, Kazirchar UP Chairman issued an old age allowance card for me. But last one year I could not get any allowance. She said, after that I went to upazila Social Welfare office. They asked me to submit my old age allowance book.
Then I submitted it. Few months later the officials said that they have stopped to give me old age allowance as the EC server does not show any information about me. They further said that I am dead in EC's server.
The story of Sanu Begum is like that of Hasan Vanu. Last one year she has not been getting Allowances for the Widow.
Sanu Begum said, couple of weeks ago I asked another woman who is also getting widow allowance, does she get? When I knew she is getting allowance on regular basis, then I went to Union Parishad office.
She said UP office informed me that I am dead in EC's server. They further said, during 2019 voter update activities EC recorded me as dead.
Upazila Election Officer Md Sawkat Ali said, during voter list update activities in 2019, the field information collector Charcommissioner Govt. Primary School Teacher Md Nizam Uddin mentioned that they are died.
When contacted with Nizam, he said, so far I can remember both of them were dead in previous voter list.
Kazirchar Union Parishad Chairman Md Montu Biswas said, the two aged women are still alive. We have nothing to do as only Upazila Nirbachan office can do something for them.
Kushtia's Hasina Vanu is also facing various types of difficulties as she is also dead in EC's server.
Kumarkhali's Koya college' s office assistant Hasina Vanu said, after getting a smart NID card I am facing many troubles to use it. When anywhere I punch the card it shows empty.
She said, I could not get Covid-19 vaccine as I have no information in the server.
She said, during last municipal election I could not find my name in voter list. Anyway I can manage it, but I have needed to gate vaccine because it is emergency situation. But only for officials mistake I am unable to get any govt. service, she added.
EC Commissioner Brigadier General Shahadat Hossain Chowdhury(retd.) said, we have concerned about the issue. Few mistakes might happen when field level information collector gathered the data.
He said, EC is very strict not to make such that type of mistakes. Those who are sufferers for such type of mistake, EC will take immediate measures to help them.