The Working Group on Migration — a panel constituted by the Union housing and urban poverty alleviation (HUPA) ministry — has recommended caste-based enumeration of migrants to ensure they get their entitlement.
In a presentation made before the Union housing minister M Venkaiah Naidu on Wednesday, Partho Mukhopadhyay, who heads the panel, said inter-state migrants often face difficulties in cities such as Delhi that do not have any notified tribes. This is despite the presence of about half-a-million people from other states, mostly migrants belonging to the scheduled tribe.
The panel noted that as per Census 2011 data, as the national capital does not have any scheduled tribe on record, these people cannot avail government benefits which they are entitled to.
The panel has recommended that the protocols of the Registrar General of India needs to be amended so that beneficiaries can avail benefits in the states to which they migrate.
Naidu has asked ministry officials to send a report to all the concerned ministries and convene a meeting to chart out further course of action on its implementation.
Besides, the panel has also recommended portability of Public Distribution System benefits. Under the Public Distribution System, people’s ration cards are invalid in their destinations of work.
The panel has recommended “expanding” and “accelerating” portability of PDS as well as health care.
Noting that money remittances of migrants was of the order of ₹50,000 crore during 2007-08, the panel suggested that the a vast network of post offices needs to be put into effective use by reducing the cost of transfer of money to avoid informal remittances.
It also suggested that migrants should be enabled to open bank accounts by asking banks to adhere to RBI guidelines regarding Know Your Customer (KYC) norms and not insist on documents that were not required.