Chief minister Vasundhara Raje on Monday launched the ambitious Bhamashah scheme for women in Rajasthan by issuing biometric cards to 70 beneficiaries which will work like debit cards.
The scheme recognises a woman as the head of the family. Under the scheme, cash will be directly transferred to the beneficiary account which the latter can use for procuring ration and other sanctioned purposes.
The chief minister launched the scheme at a function in Ajmer by distributing the cards to 10 women each in seven villages through video conferencing. This was followed by a live demonstration of the way to use the card.
Raje said, "We have moved one step ahead in women empowerment today,” as the scheme will bring transparency in the public distribution system. She also said that by 2015 the card would provide medical cover to all the recipients from Rs 30,000 to Rs 3 lakh.
The first recipient of the card, Sampati Devi, said, "I am feeling elated… as the scheme has given me recognition and will benefit my family.” Another recipient Ladi Devi said, "Now the ration shop owner would not be able to cheat us".
Social welfare minister Arun Chaturvedi said other states should also adopt the scheme to empower women as the head of the family.
Raje also inaugurated a cardio-thoracic surgery facility at JLN hospital and laid foundation stone for a new law college building in Ajmer.
Minister of state for education Vasudev Devnani, women and child welfare state minister Anita Bhadel, chief secretary CS Rajan and finance secretary Prem Singh Mehra were also present on the occasion.