In a young country like India, few regressive traditions have still managed to have a stronghold of culture, which, in the long run, inhibits the prosperity of the people and the nation on the whole. 

One such regressive notion is the stigma that surrounds a widow. Once her husband passes, widows are generally frowned on or looked sympathetically at, which affects the societal standing of the woman and impedes her development on a holistic basis. To tackle this issue and bring about woman empowerment through the upliftment of widows, the government of Assam has introduced the Assam Indira Miri Universal widow pension scheme. 

About the scheme

The Assam Indira Miri scheme is named as a tribute to Smt. Indira Miri. She was popularly known as Mereng. She was a Padma Shri award winner for promoting education in the North-East frontier.  

The State government of Assam has launched the scheme to support widows in the state, who usually find themselves to be in a financial dearth right after the passing of their husband. The widow pension scheme will financially support the family cope up with the financial vacuum which is created by the loss of the proverbial “breadwinner” of the household.    

Under the implementation of the scheme, all women in the state up to the age of 45 and who have lost their husbands will get a lump sum amount of ₹25,000 as an immediate family assistance on the financial frontier. 

As a supplement to the one time grant to widows who are below the age of 45, the Assam government has introduced a monthly pension of ₹250 under the Indira Mira Universal widow pension. 

Women in the state can avail of the benefits until they attain the age of 60 years after which they will be counted under the ambit of the old-age pension plan offered by the state. 

Indira Miri Widow Pension Plan Application

This application form can be downloaded in PDF format from the official website of the Assam government

How to apply for the Indira Mira scheme in Assam?

Any widow who wishes to avail of the benefits of the scheme should fill the form and then approach the Gram Panchayat/VCDC/VDC or Block office and submit the application form. 

To date, the Assam government has managed to help roughly about 1,70,000 widows in the state. The state government has even extended total benefits amounting to a whopping ₹40.94 crores in the year 2020-21 alone. 

In conclusion

Women who have lost their husbands have a tough time coming to terms with the gravity of the loss they have endured. Adding financial shortage just makes matters worse, and impedes any chances of the woman to cope up with the unfortunate circumstance. 

By extending financial support, the Assam government hopes to help women at least cope up with one aspect of the loss, and offer them peace of mind which comes in handy to maintain resilience and courage at a time that requires it the most.