Odisha Govt To Bear Education Expenses Of Children Orphaned By Covid-19

Bhubaneswar: Odisha Government is to bear education expenses of children orphaned by the Covid-19 pandemic, informed Advisor of Women & Child Development Department, Sulata Deo, on Monday.

Deo informed that such children will be also included in the ‘Green Passage’ scheme of the State Government to fund their higher education (medical & engineering).

As per the ‘Green Passage’ scheme introduced on May 17, 2016, Odisha Government will be bearing the costs of admission, tuition, examination, laboratories and hostel accommodation for children who are without biological or adoptive parents.

The National Commission for Protection of Children’s Rights (NCPCR) had on June 7 told the Supreme Court that as many as 3,621 children were orphaned, 274 were found abandoned and 26,176 lost either parent since April 1, 2020, and June 5, 2021, amid the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

The child rights panel, in an affidavit, said it is presenting the number of children who have lost either their mother or father or both parents, based upon the information uploaded on “BaalSwaraj” portal up to June 5. It said there are 30,071 children, who need care and protection, after collecting data from the states and Union Territories, on the portal.