Nepal | May 26, 2020

New bill seeks to guarantee social security of citizens

Himalayan News Service
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Kathmandu, August 25

The Social Security Bill registered by the Ministry of Federal Affairs and General Administration at the Parliament Secretariat yesterday guarantees the right to social security of senior citizens, financially disadvantaged, incapacitated and helpless persons, single women, those living with disabilities, children, citizens who cannot take care of themselves and people from endangered ethnic communities.

According to Section 3, the aforesaid persons shall be entitled to social security allowances.

Any person eligible for social security allowance will have to submit an application, accompanied by necessary details and documents, to the concerned local level seeking his/her name to be included on the list of beneficiaries. The person may also take help of his/her guardian or caretaker for submission of an application.

The law prohibits enjoyment of dual social security allowances. “If a citizen is eligible to receive more than one type of social security allowance (like senior citizen allowance, disabled allowance, single women allowance etc), s/he shall be provided with only one allowance of his/her choice,” the bill says.

Notwithstanding anything contained in the law, any person appointed to, elected or nominated in any government or public post, and enjoying pension or salary from government fund shall not be entitled to social security allowance.

The citizens entitled to social security allowance under this law shall be provided with an identity card by the concerned local level.

“The local level shall distribute the allowance on the basis of the identity card,” Section 17 reads. A citizen may also relinquish the allowance by making self-declaration on his/her will.

“The concerned local level shall remove the name of beneficiaries from the records of persons entitled to allowance if they migrate elsewhere or die and helpless women get married,” the law says.

The Government of Nepal shall bear the expense of social security allowance. If a person receives allowance by submitting falsified documents and recommendations, s/he shall be penalised with a fine equivalent to the amount in question in addition to realisation of the paid sum.

Similarly, any government official, who embezzles the amount sanctioned for allowance, shall be liable to departmental action under the prevailing laws.

Any person may file a complaint at the Judicial Committee of the local level regarding these offences.

“If a complaint is received, the committee shall adjudicate the case within 120 days from the date of registration of such complaint,” Section 23 reads. Any person, who is not satisfied with the decision of the committee, may make an appeal at the district court within 35 days.

A version of this article appears in print on August 26, 2018 of The Himalayan Times.

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