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Dr. Sania spends Sunday at Ehsaas emergency call centre

By Our Correspondent
April 13, 2020

Islamabad : To get better sense of callers’ queries about Ehsaas Emergency Cash, Dr. Sania Nishtar, who leads the programme, sat with operators of the Ehsaas Call Centre on Sunday, interacting with callers to ensure seamless operations.

“I wanted to hear first-hand about people’s complaints pertaining to Ehsaas Emergency Cash distribution so that we can make improvements in real time,” Dr. Sania said. On the average, 1,500 calls are being received on a daily basis; however, after appearance of the Ehsaas Emergency Cash advertisements in newspapers on Sunday, there was a sudden surge in the number of incoming calls in the Ehsaas call centre.

Mostly, people were asking about when the payment messages would be received; millions have received messages stating that they are eligible but need to wait for the “payment message.” In this regard, people want to know what the timeline is, and the Call Centre is proving useful in giving out details.

Dr. Sania was told that some people who have received regrets want to make appeals. Family members of eligible households whose heads of family had died wanted to know how they could be helped. Staff in the Call Centre is regularly briefed about the programme so that they can answer questions with clarity. Dr. Sania thanked the Call Centre staff for their dedication and spent a lot of time with them, getting insights and boosting their morale.

“It has been four days since Ehsaas started one-off cash distribution of Rs. 12,000 each to low-income households in all provinces of Pakistan including GB and AJK. By 3.30 pm on Sunday, Rs. 22.466 billion has been disbursed to 1.77 million individuals,” Dr. Nishtar briefed the media about on-the-ground progress of payments.

The Ehsaas Emergency Cash program is the largest-ever social protection and relief operation in the history of Pakistan aimed to help alleviate sufferings of low-income households, who have been distressed by the Coronavirus shutdown across the country. The government has deployed biometric technology along with other COVID-19 precautionary measures, to ensure the safe and transparent delivery of cash.