All children up to the age of 18 years, orphaned due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will be provided with free health insurance of ₹5 lakh, the central government announced on Wednesday, August 4.
The initiative will be carried out under the Centre's Ayushman Bharat scheme and the premium will be funded through Prime Minister's Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations Fund (PM-CARES), Union Minister Anurag Thakur tweeted.
Along with the tweet, Thakur posted the details of the scheme and a link to a government website on steps taken by the central government in making India self-reliant.
"As part of the steps taken by the government to look after children orphaned by Covid-19, Rs 5 lakh free health insurance under Ayushman Bharat will be given to kids up to 18 years, and its premium will be paid by PM CARES," the minister said.
PM CARES For Children Scheme
Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched the PM CARES for Children Scheme on May 29, this year. The scheme was introduced to support kids who have lost both parents/legal guardian/adoptive parents or surviving parents to the COVID-19 disease during the period starting from March 11, 2020.
The scheme's objective is to ensure comprehensive care and protection of children, enable their safety through health insurance cover, empower them through education, and equip them for self-sufficient existence with financial support on reaching 23 years of age.
According to the National Commission for Protection of Child Rights (NCPCR) data, over 30,000 children were orphaned, lost a parent, or abandoned due to the COVID-19 crisis until June 5, 2021. Among them, 26,176 children have lost a parent, 3,621 have been orphaned, and 274 have been abandoned, the data revealed.