Tshering Palden

The second phase of the Druk Gyalpo’s Relief Kidu to provide further support for people whose lives were adversely affected by the Covid-19 pandemic began last week.  

The first phase of the relief kidu supported over 23,000 individuals during the first three months from April to June. In addition, over 13,000 children from affected families also received child support Kidu of Nu 800 each.

Verification for applications received in the last week of June ended yesterday. Remaining disbursements for kidu beneficiaries from the first phase will be completed within the next week.

The second phase of the relief kidu will continue from July to September 2020. The kidu amount has been revised to Nu 10,000 for the full amount and Nu 7,000 for the partial amount.

Individuals who received the kidu in phase one will have to re-apply and provide additional information.

“In view of the recent relaxations announced by the government on various economic activities, it is envisaged that some of the existing kidu beneficiaries will no longer require kidu under Phase II,” a release from the kidu office stated.

“Applications are also open to new applicants who have been displaced by the Covid-19 pandemic.”

In an effort to restore normalcy, the government has continued with loan interest waivers and deferrals until the end of this year and possibly beyond depending on the Covid-19 situation.  The first three-month interest waiver benefited 139,261 loan account holders.

Businesses are allowed to remain open till 9pm, an extension of two hours from the previous closing time. Informal businesses and street vendors are allowed to operate.

The labour ministry’s Build Bhutan project launched on July 1 is registering both employers and job seekers. It is expected to employ around 7,000 job seekers in the construction sector.

Officials from the relief kidu office earlier said that the kidu was an interim measure to provide relief to those affected by Covid-19 and that the kidu recipients have to keep looking for work.

A relief kidu employee management system has been set up especially for Tourism Council of Bhutan (TCB) certified hotels and tour operators. Hoteliers and tour operators must update the employment and pay status of their employees through this system.

The login credentials for the system will be provided from July 10 onwards upon submission of information of contact and other business details to the TCB – employers were asked to submit the required details to TCB by July 8.

For July 2020, this system remains open until July 20. Employers are asked to provide or update information on the employment and pay status of their employees at the earliest through this system.

Employees will have to independently reapply or apply for kidu.