Information & Cultural Affairs

Information & Cultural Affairs Department, West Bengal

Address:- 28 Nityadhan Mukherjee Road, 1st Floor, Hut Complex, Howrah-711 101.  

Contact:- 033 2637 8339

Email: dicohowrah2018[at]gmail[dot]com

District Information & Cultural Office, Howrah is under Department of Information &  Cultural Affairs, Govt. of West Bengal, Nabanna.

Schemes under the Department:

  1. Lok Prasar Prakalpa.
  2. State Welfare Scheme for Purohit.
  3. Maavoi.

About the Scheme: 

  • Lok Prasar Prakalpa: The scheme launched in 2014 with an intent to revive the Folk and Tribal Culture in their respective genre across various zones and districts in the State. The scheme is primarily for the financially distressed rural Folk Artists as identified under the laid out procedure to enlist and ensure them with alternative economic support along with scope to further their domain folk culture hence preserving the cultural heritage of different parts of Bengal.The scheme has two components:
    1. Pensioner & Retainer Fees: Assured monthly income of Rs 1000/- to all the enlisted Folk Artists.
    2. Performance Fees: Performance-based fees @Rs 1000/-per head per day as and when engaged to perform their own genre mostly at any Government programme like fair/festival/Krishi Mela/Sabala Mela, etc.

    At present 1691 Nos. of Folk Artistes are enlisted at Howrah under this scheme.

  • State Welfare Scheme for Purohit: The State Welfare Scheme for Purohits was launched in September 2020 to benefit the financially distressed practicing temple /tribal purohit or priests of other communities like Christians, Jain, and Buddhists. The Scheme has mainly two components:
    1. Monthly financial assistance for such religious priests /purohits @ Rs. 1000/- per month. 
    2. Provision for Housing Scheme for economically backward purohits/priests.
  • Maavoi:  It is a Medical Cost Reimbursement Benefit Scheme for Accredited Journalists and their immediate family members. 

Required Eligibility for applying the Schemes:

(a) Lok Prasar Prakalpa:

  • The applicant may have a lineage or belong to a family practicing a given folk form or may belong to a tribal cultural/dance team or a folk based instrumentalist as recognized by the Folk & Tribal Cultural Centre.
  • The applicant must be between 18 to 60 years.
  • The applicants above 60 years will be eligible for pension. 
  • The applicant must be a resident of the state. 

(b) State Welfare Scheme for Purohit:

  • The applicant must be a financially distressed /economically backward practicing priest attached to any place of worship.
  • The applicant must be a resident of the state on the date of application under the scheme.
  • The applicant is not a beneficiary under any Social Security pension scheme or a recipient of Government pension or pension from any other organization.

(c) Maavoi:

  • The applicant must be an Accredited Journalist in the district Howrah.

Method of Applying for the Schemes:

  1. Lok Prasar Prakalpa: Since 2014 the Department of I & CA has published notification in various vernacular newspapers from time to time in order to impanel the Folk Artistes through audition in different phases held at the district. Interested and eligible Folk artists may then apply in the prescribed format for the necessary selection procedure.
  2.  State Welfare Scheme for Purohit: The interested persons can collect and submit in the prescribed Annexure A  which can be downloaded from portal. The submitted application is verified at the respective Office of SDO/BDO and recommended by the Office of the District Magistrate by the nodal officer of SWSP. The Director of Information acts as an approver on behalf of the Department.  The entire process is regulated through the ‘Jai Bangla’ Portal.
  3. Maavoi:  The Accredited Journalist may apply in prescribed Form A to be downloaded from and submit the same at the Office of DICO/SDICO in the district.

The target group beneficiary has had been receiving uninterrupted monthly financial aid during their lifetime.

  • Lok Prasar Prakalpa :- Launched in the year 2014 , a total of 1784 Folk Artistes got enlisted in various phases from the district. 
Sl No. Category No. Of folk artists enlisted No. of folk artists received benefit till July 2021. ( Removing on the reason of demise/surrender etc)
1. Retainer( 18 to 60 Years) 1540 1302
2. Pensioner(Above 60 Years) 243 390
  Total 1783 1692
  • They are receiving monthly retainer and pensioner fees of Rs. 1000/- each. 
  • And performances fees of Rs. 1000/-  per head per day as they are engaged to perform in various government fairs, festivals, programmes, etc by the department.
  • Lok Prasar Prakalpa benefit distribution data:


  • State Welfare Scheme for Purohit: Launched in September 2020  the scheme has registered 1195 Purohits and Priests as approved by the Deptt. of I & CA. Each beneficiary is to get financial assistance of Rs. 1000/- per month.
  • Maavoi: Under Maavoi Health Scheme, 20 accredited Journalists of the district are at present enlisted and a total of 58 members are enrolled under the scheme.
    Sl No. Category Status of Maavoi (as on Aug 2021)
    1. No. of Accredited Journalist 56
    2. No. of Enrolled Journalist 20
    3. No. of Beneficiaries 58 (including the Journalist)  

Grievance Redressal:

Grievance redressal is taken up as and when concern is received or submitted at the Office of the above.

What is the eligibility of enrolment under the Lok Prasar Prakalpa scheme ?

Any experienced Folk singer, dancer, or instrumentalist may apply as per the recognized genre of the State which represents the rural culture of Bengal. The objective is to identify folk artists pursuing it as their family tradition.

How can anyone get enlisted under the Lok Prasar Prakalpa scheme?

The interested person may follow the Bengali newspapers for the official notifications from the I & CA Department on the above. He/ She may collect the form from the Office of DICO/ SDICO and submit it with documents as per the guideline. The eligible applicants would be examined through an audition process and if found suitable would be impaneled as a beneficiary under the scheme. Folk Identity Card will be provided to them accordingly.

What benefit can I get under Lok Prasar Prakalpa Scheme ?

Monthly financial assistance @ Rs. 1000/- as either Retainer or as Pensioner to each enlisted LPP Artist. Separate performance fees @ Rs. 1000/- per head per day as may be assigned by the Office from time to time for various events/programmes. Payment is done through the bank after satisfactory performance.

Who can apply under the State Welfare scheme for Purohit?

Any financially distressed practicing Purohit or Priest who is attached to a place of worship like Temple, Church, etc can apply.

How can I get enlisted under State Welfare Scheme for Purohit ?.

Eligible and interested Purohit or Priest can apply in Annexure A format or can download from and submit at the Office of SDO/BDO as per the notification from time to time

What benefit can I get under State Welfare scheme for Purohit?

Monthly financial assistance of Rs. 1000/- is provided to each enlisted Purohits and Priest through bank transfer after necessary approval.

Who can apply for Maavoi Health Scheme?

Any Journalists of the district who possess Press Accreditation Card (PAC) from I & CA Department can apply.

How to apply for Maavoi Health Scheme ?

Interested Journalists can collect and submit Form A available at DICO Office or can download it from to get enlisted to the scheme. However, the decision is made by the State PAC Selection Committee.

How can I perform at the cultural events organized by the above Offices as a single performer or as an organization like Rabindra Sangeet/Nazrul geeti, Classical Music/Dance ?

Interested individuals or organizations can submit applications to the Office of the above with details of their organization in form of Curriculum Vitae along with documents in support of their claim. The office reviews such applications and may invite them to perform at various Govt. cultural events as and when possible. They are also paid an honorarium for their performance. 

Useful Links : 

Location of the Office:

Link to collect information or to download forms: Click Here.