Mon. Jun 24th, 2024

The Fund’s advisory board has been expanded to include former Comptroller and Auditor General Rajiv Mehrishi, former Infosys Foundation chairperson Sudha Murthy, and ,Teach for India co-founder Anand Shah.

Tata Sons chairman emeritus Ratan Tata, former Supreme Court judge K T Thomas, and former deputy Lok Sabha speaker Kariya Munda have been named trustees of the Prime Minister’s Citizen Assistance and Relief in Emergency Situations (PM CARES) Fund, according to a statement issued by the Prime Minister’s Office (PMO) on Wednesday.

The other two trustees are Union Home Minister Amit Shah and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman.

The announcement came a day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi presided over a meeting of the PM CARES Fund’s Board of Trustees, during which it was discussed that the initiative has a larger vision of effectively responding to emergency and distress situations.

According to a PMO statement, the “Prime Minister welcomed the trustees for becoming an integral part of the PM CARES Fund.”

The trustees also decided on Tuesday to appoint former Comptroller and Auditor General Rajiv Mehrishi, former Infosys Foundation chairperson Sudha Murthy, and Teach for India co-founder Anand Shah to the Fund’s advisory board.

The PM CARES Fund was established as part of emergency relief measures in the event of a Covid-19 pandemic in 2020. It has been designated as a Public Charitable Trust. The Prime Minister serves as the ex-officio chairperson, and all contributions are tax-free.

HT attempted to reach Ratan Tata’s office and Munda, who was elected deputy Lok Sabha speaker in 2009, for comment on their nominations but received no response.

Thomas, 85, who served as a Supreme Court judge from 1996 to 2002, said he had previously informed the PMO that due to age-related issues, he would be unable to physically attend meetings in New Delhi, but agreed when the Prime Minister assured him that the conferences would be held online.

“At first, I stated that it would be difficult for me to physically be present in Delhi at this age.” He (PM Modi) stated that the meeting will be held online. I also expressed my reservations about the language. As a south Indian, I will struggle to communicate if the meetings are held in Hindi. “He assured me that the meetings would be conducted in English,” Thomas stated.

“The creation of an advisory body was on the agenda, and names were suggested by the PMO itself.” “Three names were approved,” Thomas said.

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“The participation of new Trustees and Advisors, according to the Prime Minister, will provide broader perspectives on the operation of the PM CARES Fund.” “Their vast experience in public life will add vigour to the fund’s responsiveness to various public needs,” the PMO said in a statement.

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Meanwhile, during the meeting, PM Modi thanked the people of the country for their generous contributions to the PM CARES Fund. The “Trustees appreciated the fund’s role at a critical time for the country,” including the PM CARES for Children scheme, which supports 4,345 children, according to the statement.

The programme was launched last May 29 to assist children who lost both of their parents, legal guardians, or adoptive parents to the Covid-19 virus.

“A large portion of the 14,000 crore available in the fund was spent during the Covid-19 pandemic.” During the discussion, the exact amount was displayed… “The fund’s current balance is around 8,000 crore,” Thomas said.

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