Thiruvananthapuram: Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan in an email sent to the prime minister demanded changes in the terms of PM-CARES (Prime Minister's Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations) fund utilization.
The fund can be utilised only to meet expenses towards accommodation, treatment, food, travel and others of migrant labourers. The Central government has laid down that the expenses cannot be claimed retrospectively.
Kerala had made significant interventions to facilitate food, shelter and others for 4.85 lakh migrant labourers in the state while ensuring their welfare right from an early state of lockdown. As the amount already cannot be claimed retrospectively, the state is unable to retrieve the expenditure it made. The Chief Minister demanded to revisit this condition.
Fund from PM CARES FUND is allotted to the states and the union territories under three categories:
- 50 percent weightage for the population as per 2011 Census.
- 40 percent weightage for Covid patients.
- 10 percent weightage for equal share of the states and union territories.
The Chief Minister said that 50 percent weightage should be given to the number of migrant labourers in the states and the union territories instead of prioritizing the demographic size alone.