Social assistance Meaning of Social Assistance
Social Assistance schemes are funded from the consolidated fund of the state rather than from individual contributions, with statutory scales of benefit adjusted according to a person‘s means.
According to I.L.O define as, ―A service or scheme which provides benefits to persons of small means as right in amounts sufficient to meet minimum standards of need and financed from taxation‖.
Ø 1995: The NSAP is launched with the aim of providing social assistance to destitutes 'defined as any person who has little or no regular means of subsistence from his/her own source of income or through financial support from family members or other sources'. The NSAP includes three components:
Ø National Old Age Pension Scheme (NOAPS);
Ø National Family Benefit Scheme (NFBS);
Ø National Maternity Benefit Scheme (NMBS)
2000: Annapurna Yojana is introduced to provide eligible beneficiaries, who were not covered under NOAPS, 10 kg of free rice.
2001: NMBS is transferred to the Department of Family Welfare.
2006: Monthly pension amount for NOAPS raised from Rs. 75 to Rs. 200
2007: The NSAP is extended to cover all individuals living below the poverty line. The NOAPS is renamed Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS).
2009: The NSAP is expanded to include the Indira Gandhi National Widow Pension Scheme (IGNWPS) - for widows aged 40–64 years - and the Indira Gandhi National Disability Pension Scheme (IGNDPS) - for persons with multiple or severe disabilities aged 18–64 years living below the poverty line.
2011: Age limit for IGNOAPS is lowered from 65 to 60 years under IGNOAPS and monthly pension amount for those 80 years and above is raised from Rs. 200 to Rs. 500.
Age limits for IGNWPS and IGNDPS are changed to 40-59 and 18-59, respectively.
2012: Monthly pensions under IGNWPS and IGNDPS increased from Rs. 200 to Rs. 300. Age limit changed to 40–79 years and 18–79 years, respectively.
2013: Report of the Task Force on Comprehensive Social Assistance Programme submitted to the Government of India. Recommends raising monthly pension and expanding coverage.