Thursday, January 11, 2018

Govt benefits to Senior Citizens

By far this is the best and recent comprehensive compilation of benefits of senior citizens under Central govt schemes.
Well presented with up todate links and Action Points. I am yet to explore the website fully.
One advantage of presenting web pages via Reader View is that you can get an idea of how long it may take to read the page.


Let Senior Citizens know of these schemes run by the Central Government

The Central Government through various ministries runs multiple programs for the welfare of senior citizens. Here is a snapshot of all such schemes.

Integrated Program for Older Persons (IPOP)
This program is run by The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. Under this program, grants are given for running and maintenance Old Age Homes, Day Care Centres, Mobile Medicare Units, Multi Facility Care Centre for Older Widows etc. The main objective of the Scheme is to improve the quality of life of Older Persons by providing basic amenities like shelter, food, medical care and entertainment opportunities etc. Implementing agencies eligible for assistance under the Scheme are Panchayati Raj Institutions/Local Bodies, Non-Governmental Voluntary Organizations, etc. Funds under the Scheme of IPOP are not released to the States, but released to the implementing agencies like NGOs etc.

In the year 2016-17, a total of 396 old age homes were given grants under this scheme. The total grant amount was Rs 36.99 crore covering a total of 40200 beneficiaries.

Action Point: Details of old age homes receiving grants under this are available on the ministry's website. One can visit these homes and admit old age people who have nobody to take care of.

Rashtriya Vayoshri Yojana (RVY)
This scheme is also run by The Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment. This is a Central Sector Scheme funded from the Senior Citizens' Welfare Fund. The fund was notified in the year 2016. All unclaimed amounts from small savings accounts, PPF & EPF are to be transferred to this fund.

Under the RVY scheme, aids and assistive living devices are provided to senior citizens belonging to BPL category who suffer from age related disabilities such as low vision, hearing impairment, loss of teeth and loco-motor disabilities. The aids and assistive devices viz. walking sticks, elbow crutches, walkers/crutches, tripods/quadpods, hearing aids, wheelchairs, artificial dentures and spectacles are provided to eligible beneficiaries. The Scheme is being implemented by Artificial Limbs Manufacturing Corporation of India (ALIMCO) which is a Public Sector Undertaking under the Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment.

The estimated outlay of the Scheme is Rs. 483.6 crore up to 2019-20. The Scheme will be implemented in 260 districts and benefit 5,20,000 beneficiaries up to 2019-20. The list of selected districts and other features of the scheme are available on the PIB website. The beneficiary identification will be done by a committee at the district level headed by the District Collector and the distribution of kits will be done in a camp mode. Till date, the scheme has benefitted over 38000 beneficiaries against the target of 5,20,000 by 2019-20.

Action Point: Get old age people with such ailments in the identified districts to approach the District Collector's office to know more about the upcoming camps and take advantage of the scheme.

Indira Gandhi National Old Age Pension Scheme (IGNOAPS)
The Ministry of Rural Development runs the National Social Assistance Program (NSAP) that extends social assistance for poor households- for the aged, widows, disabled and in the case of death of the breadwinner. This is in addition to the benefits that the State Governments extend to these people. Under this scheme, financial assistance is provided to person of 60 years and above and belonging to family living below poverty line as per the criteria prescribed by Government of India. Central assistance of Rs. 200/- per month is provided to person in the age group of 60-79 years and Rs. 500/- per month to persons of 80 years and above.

Funds under the schemes of NSAP are released on the basis of reports submitted by States/UTs. A total of Rs 5901 crore was released under the scheme in 2016-17.

Action Point: Find out the details of the relevant state scheme and get eligible old age people around you apply for the pension.

Varishtha Pension Bima Yojana(VPBY)
This scheme is run by the Ministry of Finance. The Varishtha Pension Bima Yojana(VPBY) was first launched in 2003 and then relaunched in 2014. Both are social security schemes for Senior Citizens intended to give an assured minimum pension on a guaranteed minimum return on the subscription amount. These Schemes are implemented through Life Insurance Corporation(LIC) of India, which is paid the difference between the actual yield earned by LIC on the funds invested under the scheme and the assured return of 9% committed by the Government. Both the schemes VPBY 2003 and VPBY 2014 are closed for future subscriptions. However, policies sold during the currency of policy are being serviced as per the commitment of guaranteed 9% return announced by the Government under the schemes. As on 31st March 2017, a total of  2,74,885 beneficiaries and 3,11,981 beneficiaries are being benefited under VPBY 2003 and VPBY 2014 respectively.

The Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana(PNVVY) was launched in May 2017 to provide social security during old age. This is a simplified version of the VPBY and will be implemented by the Life Insurance Corporation(LIC) of India. Under the scheme, on payment of an initial lump sum amount ranging from Rs. 1,50,000  for a minimum pension of Rs. 1000 per month to a maximum of Rs. 7,50,000/- for a maximum pension of Rs. 5,000  per month, subscribers will get an assured pension based on a guaranteed rate of return of 8% per annum payable monthly/quarterly/half-yearly/annually. The duration of the scheme will be for a period of ten years and the scheme is opened for subscription for a period of one year i.e. from 4th May, 2017 to 3rd May, 2018. As on 30th November 2017, a total of number of 1,83,842 persons are being benefited under PMVVY.

Action Point: The PMVVY is open for subscription till May 2018. Get old age people around you who are eligible for this scheme to explore and subscribe.

National Program for the Health Care of Elderly (NPHCE)
The Ministry of Health & Family Welfare had launched the 'National Programme for the Health Care of Elderly' (NPHCE) during 2010-11 to address various health related problems of elderly people. The major objectives under district level activities of the NPHCE are to provide dedicated health facilities in District Hospitals, Community Health Centres (CHCs), Primary Health Centres (PHCs) and Sub-Centres (SCs) levels through State Health Society. The health care facilities, being provided under this program, are either free or highly subsidised The Following facilities are being provided under the Program.

  • Geriatric OPD and 10 bedded Geriatric Ward at District Hospitals.
  • Bi-weekly Geriatric Clinic at Community Health Centres (CHCs)
  • Weekly Geriatric Clinic at Primary Health Centre (PHCs).
  • Provision of Aids and Appliances at Sub-centres.

The Centre will bear 75% of the total budget and the State Government will contribute 25% of the budget, for activities up to district level.

Action Point: As on date, the district level activities of the program have been sanctioned in 520 districts of 35 States/UTs. Check for districts in your state that have benefitted under this program.

Featured Image: Max Pixel


Dr P Vyasamoorthy
040-27846631 / 09490804278

Without haggling, agreed to pay Rs 80 for Auto from Lions bhavan to home


Delhi Govt to send 77000 senior citizens on pilgrimage - FREE

Delhi government to fund 77,000 senior citizens going on pilgrimages | delhi news

The Delhi Cabinet approved on Tuesday a new scheme for lower- and middle-class senior citizens to go on free religious pilgrimages.

Under the Mukhyamantri Teerthayatra Yojana, the Delhi government will select 77,000 devotees every year for an all-expenses-paid trip on five designated routes: Haridwar-Rishikesh-Neelkanth, Ajmer-Pushkar, Amritsar-Anantpur Sahib, Vaishnodevi-Jammu, Mathura-Vrindavan. At least 1,100 senior citizens, aged 60 and above, will be chosen from each of Delhi's 70 assembly segments.

Pilgrims will be allowed to bring an attendant who is a relative of theirs and at least 18 years old, though the government is not sure how many it will be able to accommodate. "This may add to the number of people travelling under this scheme," said an official from the Delhi tourism department who requested anonymity. "We are yet to estimate the exact number of attendants who will be allowed on this free trip."

Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia, who is also the state tourism minister, said the pilgrims will travel in air-conditioned buses. "The government will bear all the expenses including the hotel cost, breakfast, lunch and an insurance of Rs 2 lakh for each pilgrim and an accompanying relative," he said after the cabinet meeting.

The scheme, intended to benefit senior citizens with an annual income under Rs 3 lakh, is the first free religious trip sponsored by the Delhi government . Previous administrations facilitated discount travel packages. The Akhilesh Yadav government sponsored religious trips in Uttar Pradesh starting in 2015, but this program was scrapped by the incumbent BJP administration last September.

The Delhi tourism official explained how the new program will work. "The selection of pilgrims will be done through a draw of lots, and the local MLA will have to certify the residents as belonging to Delhi. All other modalities will be specified soon in the final notification." The government did not offer any other details about when the program would go into effect.

The tours will take three days and two nights, and will cover all the sites of religious and spiritual significance on the designated routes. "Through this scheme, we have tried to cover all religions, in line with our government's pluralistic approach," said a Delhi government spokesperson.

The trips are expected to cost Rs 7,000 per pilgrim. The government estimates the total annual expense will be Rs 53 crore.

The applicants must be a resident of Delhi and they cannot be employed by the central, state or local government. Sisodia said that pilgrims will probably be limited to one trip every three or five years.

Application forms will be filled out and filed online. They will be sent to either the Office of the Divisional Commissioner, the office of the appropriate MLA, or the office of Tirth Yatra Committee.


Dr P Vyasamoorthy
040-27846631 / 09490804278


Wednesday, January 10, 2018

Book Review - Ananta Vinayaka - The Eternal God

Book Review: Ananta Vinayaka

Book Review: Ananta Vinayaka: The Eternal God. Original in Telugu authored by Prof V Balamohandas and English version translated by Sri S Vinaya Bhushan Rao.
Published by Vasantha Mohana Foundation, Vishakapatnam. (Ph 0891-2551 1282) 2011. Pages 226 + ten colour plates. Price: Rs 200/-

This book on Lord Vinayaka is a veritable encyclopedia offering a wide variety of information on the God Ganesha. It has one less than sixty chapters. You can find stories about the origin of “elephant god”, his relationship with personages like: Agastiya, Kubera, Talaasura, Parasurama, Vibheeshna, Vyasa, Jambavanta, Avvaiyaar etc. Info on prominent temples of Ganesha in India and abroad are furnished. Methodology of conducting Pujas, Vratams, Prayers are given. The book is an indispensable source for several Naamavalis, stotras and poems. All stories connected with Vinayaka – including the miracle of Ganesha Idols drinking milk in 1995 – are described in detail. Ganesh festival as obtaining in Andhra Pradesh has been described vividly.

It is a book that will help us recover and retain our culture. Senior citizens will find a mine of info to share with their grand children. Ladies’ Bhajan groups will benefit immensely in learning and reciting shlokas and naamavalis. Every newspaper published something or the other on Vinayaka chaturthi . The first place they should look for is here.

Prof Balamohandas, being a management oriented academician, has a passion to lecture on leadership qualities of Vinayaka analyzing his physical features. No wonder he has given 200 plus talks on this topic alone. His entire family members are ardent devotees of Lord Ganesha.  The person who inspired the author to write this wonderful book is Sri YVSR Moorti. We should thank these Trimurthys: Author, Translator and the Inspiration for this literary treasure house on Eternal God – VINAYAKA. I am hopeful of the book becoming eternally useful in times to come.

Thursday, January 4, 2018

Delhi - World Book Fair - Jan 2018

Please see the announcement given below. I have witnessed the World Book Fair in Pragati Maidan, Delhi quite a few times.

In those days it was an occasion to select / buy books for the library and personal  use at good discounts. Booksellers would even agree to send books selected there over our library in Hyderabad "on approval" basis. My friend who came to know that I had made a visit exclusively to attend the book fair remarked: "How many organizations will send librarians by flight to participate in exhibitions?". Well, I was one of the highly pampered employees in IDL.

During my trip to the exhibition in 1978 I managed to complete my wife's personal collection of books by Georgette Heyer.

She and my daughters are so fond of Heyer that my wife - as soon as she knew her days are numbered - took care to settle the issue  about who will take which of Heyer's books.

I am marking a copy of this news to my blog on discounts and rebates for seniors - do you know why?


Bibliophiles can rejoice as the New Delhi World Book Fair (NDWBF) is back to serenade Delhiites with the written word. However, space for the fair, which will be held from January 6 to January 14, has been reduced to half this year, as work on the redevelopment of Pragati Maidan continues. Nevertheless, there is still much to enjoy, as the fair attracts authors, poets and bibliophiles from across the world.

The nine-day-long exhibition will be held from 11 am to 8 pm each day.

The NDWBF, which is organised every year by the National Book Trust, will now be spread across around 20,000 sq mt as opposed to an area of 40,000 sq mt whic was given for the 2017 fair. Hall number 7A to H, 8,9,10,11,12, and 12 A will host books from 9,000 writers across 1,600 stalls.

The Indian Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO) which is at the helm of affairs of Pragati Maidan, is revamping it into a world class convention/exhibition centre.

Owing to the construction work going on there, India International Trade Fair (IITF) too was held at smaller scale last year.

The main theme for the book fair this year is environment and climate change. Keeping in mind various problems faced by people due to rapidly transitioning atmosphere, the NBT will spread the message of conservation of environment using banners and posters.

The European Union is the guest of honour this time for the NDWBF, hence European books will be the flavour of the event. Corners A, B and C in Hall Number 7 will have Focus Book Corner with publications of different genres including fiction, horror, non-fiction, poetry, politics, literature among others, all written by European authors.

A Children's Pavillion has also been set up to promote reading among children.

Meanwhile, tickets for NDWBF will be available across 50 Metro stations including Kashmere Gate, Pragati Maidan, Rajiv Chowk, and Delhi University. Tickets can also be bought from gate number 1 and 10 at Pragati Maidan as well as online. They cost Rs 30 for adults and Rs 20 for children under the age of 15 years. Entry is free for senior citizens.

Dr P Vyasamoorthy
040-27846631 / 09490804278

Rare occurrence: I won Rs 75 for middle line in Tambola (Lotto) game, after missing to claim in time for 'jaldi five'

Wednesday, January 3, 2018

Concessional fares for Senior Citizens in Delhi & Pune Metro

Government: Concessionla fares for senior citizens and students possible for Mumbai and Delhi Mtero

Government: Concessional fares for senior citizens and students possible for Mumbai and Delhi Metro

The Government informed the Lok Sabha that it will now be possible to consider concessional fares for senior citizens and students on metros in Mumbai and Delhi, after a new Fare Fixation Committee, a statutory body, is established.

Replying to a question on concessional fares in Calcutta Metro, Union Urban Development Minister, Hardeep Puri said, "There is a crucial difference between the Calcutta Metro run by the Indian Railways and the rest of the metro systems because the rest of the metro systems are run on the basis of tokens and smart cards."

He recalled in 2016, the Fare Fixation Committee of the Delhi Metro had considered a system of concessional fare, but they found that they were not technologically ready at that point of time.

"It is my view, after having studied this issue for about three months or so, that it should be possible for the Government to recommend concessional fares for senior citizens and students, but the fixation of those fares is not done by the Government," said Puri.

Explaining how a fare fixation structure of the Metro was insulated from the competitive and populist politics which normally Governments can succumb to, the minister said, "There is a Fare Fixation Committee, which is a statutory body, headed by either a sitting judge of the High court or a retired judge and comprises of two members of Additional Secretary level officer, one each from the Central Government and the State Government."

He said the Fare Fixation Committee of the Delhi Metro had submitted its report in September, 2016. Puri added, "I think, in the case of the Mumbai Metro because the High Court has thrown that out - we would be happy to make that recommendation."

Wednesday, December 6, 2017

SAFAL - Bhubaneshwar - Free delivery to senior citizens

Safal launches free delivery, health check-ups for elderly

PTI | Dec 5, 2017, 17:07 IST

Bhubaneswar, Dec 5 () Mother Dairy Fruit and Vegetable Pvt Ltd (MDFVPL), which operates the 'Safal' outlets, today launched new services like free home delivery and health check-ups for the senior citizens.

MDFVPL is a wholly-owned subsidiary of National Dairy Development Board (NDDB) and Safal presenly has nine outlets in the city.

There is no minimum value of the purchases to qualify for free home delivery and it will reach the senior citizen consumers within 2 hours, provided they reside within a radius of 2-3 kms from the outlets.

Launching the initiative, Dilip Rath, Chairman of NDDB said customer centricity and farmer benefit has been core to Safal's business proposition.

"In line with the same belief, we are now launching a consumer engagement programme especially aimed towards our respected senior citizens, who constitute approximately 5 per cent of the total population of the city," he said.

"As part of the program, we will be offering a host of solutions such as free home delivery, free basic health check-ups and activation sessions to engage and make them more aware," said Rath.

The NDDB Chairman added that the service will be expanded to other areas as Safal opens more outlets.

Besides free home delivery, the new initiative also entails free basic tests like BMD, BMI, Blood Pressure and Diabetes in association with resident welfare associations.

Safal launched its operations in Bhubaneswar in July 2017. SKN JM

Dr P Vyasamoorthy
040-27846631 / 09490804278

20% of Quora  traffic comes from India, I can't believe it! Are we that eager to answer?


Monday, November 27, 2017

Discounts in flight rates - many - heavy

Airlines offer heavy discount; Here's a list of best deals

 Few airlines have come up with various discount for their passenger travelling both within India and abroad. These offers can be availed for travelling period between December 2017 to January 2019.
Updated: Sun, Nov 26, 2017
03:27 pm
Mumbai, ZeeBiz WebDesk

Airlines operating in India have come up with various products offering heavy discounts for both domestic and international passngers.

Here's a list of deals offered by these airlines, so you can compare the best one for your travelling experience.


Latest one would be Interglobe Aviation (Indigo) which on November 25, launched a special product called as "Flexi Fare"at attractive price levels.

Under Flexi Fare offer, domestic travellers will be charged Rs 2,250 and international travellers with Rs 2,500, whichever is lower. Both corporate and leisure customers travelling with IndiGo will now have wider choices to make changes at lower premium.

Also students and senior Citizens can get avail attractive discounts not only on their onward journeys but even higher discounts on their Round-Trip journeys with IndiGo till March 31, 2018.


This Mumbai-based low cost carrier introduced a  limited period offer of heavy discounts starting as low as Rs 312 for a one-way journey from seven cities including Delhi, Kochi, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Chennai, Ahmedabad and Lucknow routes.

Discount fares which are excluding taxes - are valid for travelling period between December 01, 2017 and October 28, next year. Booking is available till November 29, 2017.


Just like above two airlines, AirAsia also announced a discount sale, under which the airline is offering passengers one-way base fare at Rs 99 for a domestic journey and Rs 444 for international flights under a limited period offer.

Travelling period under this offer is valid between May, 2018 and January 2019.

Domestic destination such as Bengaluru, Kochi, Hyderabad, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar, Kolkata, New Delhi, Goa, among others, are included in this offer.

While the sale offer is available for internation destinations like Kuala Lumpur from Tiruchirappalli, Kochi, Delhi, Bhubaneswar, Jaipur and to Bali from Mumbai & Kolkata, Bangkok from Jaipur, Kolkata, Kochi, Chennai and Bengaluru.


SpiceJet unlike above mentioned airlines, came up with gift cards ranging between Rs 500 - Rs 50,000, which allows customers to travel to destinations of their choice at convenient times. This gift cards are valid on air fares.

A passenger will have to pay the full transaction amount with SpiceJet Gift Card only to avail this Offer. An instant discount of 100% on the selected Priority check-in and/or 50% on the selected meals shall be automatically applied.

Jet Airways:

In the start of November month, Jet Airways announced it's Winter season offer, where a customer can save up to 30% on travel from India to high–demand destinations served by the airline's international network.

Travel under this offer commences with the coming New Year Рeffective Jan 22, 2018, and is applicable on both Premi̬re and Economy cabin classes.

Moreover, guests from all domestic points across Jet Airways' entire domestic network have the option to travel with ease and convenience to Amsterdam Schiphol, Paris Charles de Gaulle, London Heathrow and Toronto in Europe and North America; to major Gulf destinations including Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Sharjah, Bahrain, Doha, Dammam, Jeddah, Riyadh, Kuwait and Muscat; to Colombo, Dhaka, Kathmandu in the SAARC region and to the much-touristed destinations of Bangkok, Singapore and Hong Kong.

The limited period offer is also valid for the airline's new non-stop services, between Chennai and Paris, Bengaluru and Amsterdam and Mumbai / Delhi and London Heathrow.

Dr P Vyasamoorthy
040-27846631 / 09490804278

Limerick has been awarded Learning City Award in 2017 by UNESCO