PM Modi has come to power for a second term with a humongous majority. After coming back into power, Modi government has taken the first big decision in his second tenure by approving certain changes to the Prime Minister’s Scholarship Scheme for wards of deceased defence personnel under the National Defence Fund. According to a statement from the PMO, this was “in line with the Prime Minister’s vision for India’s safety, security and the well-being of those who protect the nation…”
The two major changes under this decision are the hike in the scholarship provided under this scheme and the extension of this scheme to the wards of state police officials martyred in terror or Naxal attacks. PM Modi has increased the scholarship amount from Rs. 2,000 to Rs. 2,500 per month for boys and Rs. 2,250 to Rs. 3,000 per month for girls. The decision to widen the ambit of the Scheme has indeed given it a whole new dimension and displays the commitment of the government towards the well-being of the family members of those who give the supreme sacrifice in the line of duty.
According to a statement from the PMO, the scheme is supposed to encourage technical and postgraduate education for the widows and wards of deceased defence forces personnel, the paramilitary forces personnel and the Railway Protection Force personnel. The National Defence Fund is administered by an executive committee consisting of the Prime Minister, the Defence Minister, the Home Minister and the Finance Minister. While the Prime Minister is the chairperson of the Executive Committee, the other cabinet ministers are its members. Under this scheme, new scholarships are given to 5,500 wards of the armed forces personnel, 2,000 wards of the paramilitary forces personnel and 150 wards of the Railway Protection Force every year. This highlights how the scheme has served as a crucial social security measure for the wards of the deceased personnel of the Armed Forces of the Union and the Railway Protection Force.
The way the Modi government has started off in its second tenure reaffirms its commitment towards the betterment of those who go to any extent in protecting the nation. Extension of the scheme to certain state police officials shows the intent of the Modi government not to leave anyone behind and truly contribute towards the betterment of every single personnel who is involved in the arduous task of protecting the nation from its internal and external enemies.