In a significant movement, the Kerala government has introduced Pravasi Welfare Scheme for the seafarers from the state. About 40,000 seafarers will benefit from the new scheme that was launched by the government a few months back.
A person who has worked at least two years in Merchant Navy and below 60 years of age can join the welfare scheme. Welcoming the decision to introduce the welfare scheme for seafarers from Kerala, All Kerala Seamen’s Association Secretary Salim Parambath said that it was a great solace to the people who have toiled hard in the seas.
Once a person attains 60 years of age, he would be entitled for pension. Once a member dies, his family would be getting the family pension. Apart from these, the welfare board also provides financial assistance for treatment and education of children. The family also gets assistance if a member dies due to accident or illness.
Salim said that the new scheme would benefit about 40,000 people in the state who are working as semen. However, he noted that the option now availing membership was only available for those who are below 60 years of age (both working and retired). He opined that the government should take the initiative for accommodating those who are above 60 years of age also in the scheme.
“Those who are older than 60 years may come around 7,000 only. We have already demanded the government to take a favorable decision for accommodating them in the scheme. The Pravasi Welfare Board is known to have recommended the government to take a decision in this regard,” he said.