The government will bring 50 lakh more ultra-poor families under ration card facilities to provide them with 20 kg of rice at Tk10 per kg each month from May to June. They will also be given cash aid for buying daily essentials during the time.
The disaster management and relief ministry has already sought Tk1,500 crore from the finance ministry to give Tk2,000 per month to each of the poor families who have been hit hard by the ongoing shutdown enforced to stem the coronavirus outbreak.
If the ministry gets less than the amount, the per month cash assistance for the poor will come down to Tk1,000.
The informal sector workers - facing unemployment caused by the shutdown – will also get cash relief before Eid-ul-Fitr from a Tk760 crore fund announced by the prime minister.
Finance ministry officials said the ward-level committees, which were formed across the country, have begun to make lists of beneficiaries.
The amount of cash will be fixed for each beneficiary based on the number of families gets enlisted, they added.
If there are 25 lakh families in the lists, each of them will get Tk3,000 per month. The more the number of beneficiaries is in the lists, the lower the amount they will receive, the officials said.
On the other hand, the finance ministry has already released Tk2,000 crore out of a Tk5,000 crore incentive for export-oriented industries to pay wages to factory workers.
The banks will pay wages for April to the workers of readymade garment factories and other export-oriented industries.
State Minister for Disaster Management and Relief Dr Md Enamur Rahman told The Business Standard that the food ministry will implement the food rationing programme in May while the relief ministry will execute it in June.
"A committee, which has been formed to implement the cash aid programme properly, will finally decide on how much cash each family will get," he added.
The government has primarily decided to continue rations card facilities and cash aid for the two months. If the situation does not improve, the facilities will be extended to July, the state minister said.
If the crisis is over by May, the programmes might be cancelled in June, he continued.
A list is also being prepared by the ward-level committees formed across the country to provide the informal sector workers with cash assistant.
Finance division officials said once the list is ready, the jobless workers will get cash relief from a Tk760 crore incentive package.
Joint Secretary of Finance Division Sirajun Nur Chowdhury said the workers will get the money in Ramadan. But they have not decided yet how money each of them will be given. The amount will be fixed as per the number of beneficiaries.