Saturday September 25, 2021

Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme

April 27, 2020

PESHAWAR: The data made public on the Ehsaas Emergency Cash portal has no eligible beneficiary from North Waziristan while South Waziristan has only 18 eligible beneficiaries.

The data on the portal stated that a total of 1,437,483 beneficiaries have enrolled for the Ehsaas cash programme in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa.

Out of these enrolled beneficiaries, 1,152,544 have received the cash amount. The portal has some very interesting information about the beneficiaries in different districts in Khyber Pakhtunkhwa. The data displayed on the portal stated that South Waziristan district has a total of 18 eligible beneficiaries only. It did not have any data about the North Waziristan district.

Responding to criticism about the anomalies in the data, Benazir Income Support Programme Chairperson Dr Sania Nishtar tweeted from her Twitter handle that the information had been published for transparency purposes. She said that the assistance under the 8171 scheme was being given on the basis of 2010 survey in category-I and category-II. She added that due to the law and order situation in North and South Waziristan districts the survey had not been conducted there.

Dr Sania Nishtar further wrote that in Category-III, Waziristan would get the share as per population, adding that 61,164 SMS were received from North Waziristan and 62,499 from South Waziristan. She added that the information was being assessed.

She said that for Category-III the share of the four provinces, Azad Kashmir and Gilgit-Baltistan would be made on the basis of population and the deserving persons would be identified through the Nadra data analytics.

She claimed that there was no room for political interference and nepotism in the Ehsaas Emergency Cash Programme as transparency was the first priority of the government.

However, Member Provincial Assembly from North Waziristan, Mir KalamWazir disputed her claims about merit and transparency in the Ehsaas cash programme. He said that SaniaNishtar was now in the process of damage control after the social media highlighted the issue. He claimed that no SMS service was used for identifying the beneficiaries in North Waziristan. “The administration was directed to prepare the list overnight for disbursement of the cash,” he said. He added that the district administration asked the elected assembly members to nominate a representative for selecting the beneficiaries. “My nominees were not consulted but were asked to sign the list the administration had prepared,” he claimed.

He said even the PTI workers staged protest against the exclusion of their party members from the list. They were later pacified by allocating some quota for them, he added. The PTI local leaders and workers were among the beneficiaries, therefore, the claim of transparency and non-interference was rubbish, he maintained.

Mir KalamWazirsaid that mentioning the tribal districts as tribal agencies in the data manifested the incompetence of the people managing the programme.

“It also has mentioned the erstwhile districts as agencies despite the fact that after the merger the former tribal agencies are now districts of Khyber Pakhtunkhwa,” he argued.

The portal also wrongly mentioned Upper Kurram as tehsil of Mohmand Agency (district) with just one eligible beneficiary. It mentioned Khal tehsil of Upper Dir having 20 eligible beneficiaries while Katlang tehsil in Mardan has 12 eligible beneficiaries. Bahrain in Swat has 44 eligible beneficiaries.