Agartala, Dec 7: The disbursement of monthly allowances to thousands of poor people has been disrupted in Tripura after the demonetisation of high value currency notes, a minister said here on Wednesday.
"Tripura government has been providing 27 different categories of monthly social allowances to thousands of people and families. Due to demonetisation of Rs 500 and Rs 1,000 currency notes, disbursement of monthly allowances has become very tough due to either non-availability or shortage of notes of various denominations," Tripura Finance Minister Bhanulal Saha told IANS.
He said: "Of the 27 allowances, one monthly allowance is for the otherwise abled above 80-years-old people who can not come to bank or ATM booths. That's why officials of social welfare department went to their houses to give the monthly allowance of Rs 600 to 3,200 beneficiaries. This scheme is the most affected due to demonetisation."
The minister said that due to non-availability of sufficient Rs 500 and Rs 100 currency notes, the social welfare department could disburse the monthly allowance to only 1,700 out of 3,200 differently abled aged people in November.
"Our officials requested the bank officials to provide currency notes with denomination of Rs 100 and Rs 500, but the bank authorities expressed their helplessness," Saha added.
Sharply criticising Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government, he said that due to severe shortage of currency notes of smaller denominations, especially Rs 100 and Rs 500 notes, trade, business and economy has been badly affected across the country.
"Without creating adequate infrastructure and availability of different types of transaction and business cards, demonetisation of high value currency notes was a shortsighted decision and it affected the majority of the people," he stated.
"Those who have no transaction and business cards, those who are illiterate and those who are blind or physically not fit, how will they cope with the new transaction systems now being advocated by the central government," the minister asked.