To promote inter-caste marriages Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik on Tuesday launched a web portal that would help inter-caste couples get an incentive within 60 days of application.
Launching the Sumangal portal, developed by ST & SC Development, Minorities & Backward Classes Welfare Department, CM Patnaik also announced hike in the incentive from Rs 1 lakh to Rs 2.5 lakh. Patnaik said such kind of marriages would lead to social harmony.
Also read: Covid-19 fear looms large among officials as Bihar readies to go to polls
To get the one-time incentive, the marriage should be between upper-caste Hindus and Hindu of scheduled castes. The marriage should be valid as per the law and duly registered under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955. One of the spouses should belong to the scheduled castes as defined under Article 341 of the Constitution of India.
The grant would be given only to people marrying for the first time. However in case, the bride is a widow or the bride-groom a widower, they would be eligible for the incentive. Incentive would also be given for the purchase of lands/essential articles for house-hold or for starting a business.
Odisha had last hiked the incentive for inter-caste marriage in August 2017 when it raised it had it from Rs 50,000 to Rs 1 lakh. At least 17 percent of Odisha’s population are Dalits. Last year, 658 inter-caste marriages had taken place in Odisha.