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Solution for beneficiaries facing biometric issues

By Our Correspondent
June 05, 2020

Islamabad : Ehsaas has introduced a supplementary payment solution to facilitate beneficiaries of Ehsaas Emergency Cash who are eligible but were facing problems in withdrawing money owing to defying biometric identification.

The supplementary solution has done away with the biometric verification of fingerprints from NADARA offices. Now, beneficiaries with this issue will be paid exclusively in designated bank branches of partner banks without biometric verification. Two banks are partnering with Ehsaas for emergency cash transfers—Habib Bank Limited in Punjab, Sindh and Balochistan and Bank-Alfalah across KP, GB and AJK.

Biometric verification of thumb or finger impressions was previously mandatory for collection of the cash handout being disbursed to the low-income strata.

Under the new solution, Ehsaas will send out a new payment SMS to qualified beneficiaries through 8171 service. The message will signify the name and CNIC number of beneficiaries, date of payment and name of designated bank along with address of bank branch to withdraw money. The process has already teed off. Ehsaas has maintained lists of all beneficiaries to be facilitated through bank branches. Most importantly, beneficiaries will have to carry their original CNIC and mobile phone with a message of payment on it to collect the one-time cash assistance from banks.

“Direct payments through branches of partner banks is a key facet of the Ehsaas disbursement solution that has been built to support only those who had difficulty with fingerprints verification for emergency withdrawals,” reiterated Dr. Sania Nishtar, PM’s Special Assistant on Social Protection and Poverty Alleviation. She further added, “All people on the eligibility list of Ehsaas with biometric challenges will be receiving new disbursement messages from 8171 service and the process is being completed nationwide in several stages to avoid overcrowding at bank branches. Banks have to ensure all necessary precautionary measures to avoid the spread of the COVID-19.”

More than Rs. 117.49 billion have thus far been disbursed among 96.63 million vulnerable families. Recently, Ehsaas has commenced distribution of emergency cash to daily wage earners, pie rate workers, labourers, and small shopkeepers across North and South Waziristan areas of KP.