Replying to a question raised by Aroori Ramesh during Question Hour, the minister said since inception of Aasara Scheme, a total of Rs. 9,651.39 crore have been spent.
He said unlike previous regimes when a nominal pension of Rs. 200-250 used to be paid, the State Government increased the pension from Rs. 1,000 to Rs. 1,500.
He said in view of demonitisation, efforts were being made to make the payments through banks and post offices. He said almost 17% of beneficiaries belong to Scheduled Castes while 7% are from minority communities. (INN)