The central government has removed the income criteria for giving financial assistance to intercaste marriages where either the bride or groom is a Dalit.
Under the ‘Dr Ambedkar scheme for social Integration through inter-caste marriage’, the government had earlier restricted the financial assistance — Rs 2.5 lakh — only to couples whose total annual income does not exceed Rs 5 lakh.
But Ministry of Social Justice and Empowerment directed in a recent order to states to scrap the income limit and to have “no income limit for incentive under the scheme”, reported The Indian Express.
The financial assistance is aimed at “appreciate the socially bold step” and to enable the newlywed to “settle down in the initial phase of their married life”.
It is given for the first marriage, which is registered under the Hindu Marriages Act, with the proposal being submitted within a year of marriage.
The new order mandates that the couple should submit their Aadhar number to get the assistance to their joint accounts.
While the target of the scheme, started in 2013, was to give assistance to 500 couples, only 72 of the 522 couples applied got assistance in 2015-16, and only 5 in the year before.
Officials attribute it to the couples not fulfilling the conditions, the report said.