Pradhan Mantri Matru Vandana Yojana : Analysis – UPSC GS2

Issues in PMMVY:
  • Unchanged targets: The target of the scheme has remained unchanged over the years.
  • Fall in enrolment and disbursements:  In 2020-21, more than 50% of registered beneficiaries did not receive all three instalments and there was a 9% drop in enrolment under the scheme.
  • Reduced Budget allocation: Budget allocation for the PMMVY has also been reduced as it has been clubbed under SAMARTHYA along with multiple other schemes such as Beti Bachao Beti Padhao.
State-level schemes: 
  • States such as Odisha, Telangana, and Tamil Nadu, respectively, implemented State-specific schemes for maternity benefits.
  • States’ schemes had relatively increased coverage and higher maternity benefits.  For instance, Odisha’s MAMATA, has been offering a conditional cash transfer of ₹5,000 as maternity benefit for up to two live births for more than a decade now. It has led to better performance of this scheme, in comparison to PMMVY Scheme.
Suggestions for improvements in PMMVY:
  • Extend the maternity benefit under the PMMVY to the second live birth, similar to its predecessor, the Indira Gandhi Matritva Sahyog Yojana.
  • Increase the maternity benefit amount:
    • The current entitlement of ₹5,000 provided over one-year amounts to one month’s wage loss (as per the MGNREGA wage rate of ₹202).
    • The Maternity Benefit Act, 1961 mandates 12 weeks of maternity leave for women with two or more children. Thus, pregnant and lactating mothers should receive 12 weeks of wage compensation amounting to ₹15,000.
  • Address the implementation gaps that lead to reduced coverage. These gaps stem from a lack of awareness within targeted beneficiaries and process level challenges.
  • simplification of the process can result in increased registration of beneficiaries. Further, the current registration form requires a mother and child protection (MPC) card, husband’s Aadhaar card, bank passbook, and registration form for each of the three instalments. This  results  in delayed, rejected or pending applications.

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