ID cards for households below poverty line given to wealthy in Bajura

BAJURA: The identity cards meant for households below poverty line have been distributed to the non-poor households in four municipalities and five rural municipalities of Bajura district.

Locals have expressed concern that the cards have been provided to wealthy households, claiming that the then District Development Committee had missed the real economically deprived households during its data collection.

"I have been managing my family of six persons by ploughing others' fields, but I do not have the identity of the poor," said a local Dhan Ukheda of Siradi in Badimalika Municipality-7 in the district.

According to Dharmaraj Upadhyaya, chairperson of Badimalika Municipality-7, the identity cards have been provided more to able households rather than the deprived ones, adding that this mistake should be corrected.

Another local Hari Rokaya, who had gone to receive the identity card, claimed that wealthy people have been getting cards due to their links. Even persons who have houses in Nepalgunj and Kathmandu have received the 'identity card for the deprived'.

Local government workers, contractors, businessmen, political leaders, and teachers are on the list of people under the poverty line.

For distribution of identity cards to the deprived households, the government had prepared a procedural in 2012 and based on this, data of the economically deprived households was collected from 27 the then VDCs, five rural municipalities, and four municipalities on 2013.

The data was based on 18 indicators including population, geographical remoteness, property-holding, and economic status based on caste in the district. In the data, deprived households were classified into three groups as very poor, medium and marginalised.

According to the classification, very poor would get free health facilities, tax exemption, and priority in social security allowance. Similarly, the procedural has mentioned that the remaining two types of identity card holders would get various facilities respectively.