50,000 women in Himachal covered under Rural Livelihood Mission

Shimla : Nearly 50,000 women from below poverty line (BPL) families in Himachal Pradesh have been covered under the National Rural Livelihood Mission, the state government said on Sunday.

Since the start of the programme in April 2013, about 11,000 self-help groups (SHGs) have been formed and have received a total credit of Rs 90 crore, an official statement said.

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Five blocks — Kandaghat, Mandi Sadar, Nurpur, Haroli and Basantpur — were selected in the first phase for implementing the programme. The remaining blocks would be covered in four years in a phased manner.

The programme would be covering all the BPL families in the state. Later, all the poorest of the poor and also families which are marginally above poverty line would be selected through the process of participatory identification of poor by organising them into self-help groups (SHGs).

These SHGs are linked to banks which start to give them loans.

Under the programme, each SHG gets a loan of Rs 2-3 lakh on seven percent interest for starting some business. Depending on the performance of the SHG, the loan goes up to Rs 10 lakh.

In Shimla and Mandi districts, the banks will provide loan to all women groups up to Rs.3 lakh. These groups will also get additional interest subvention of three percent on regular repayment of loan, reducing the effective rate of interest to four percent.

This interest subvention is being provided by the central government, said the statement.

So far 6,345 SHGs have received bank credit of Rs 59.09 crore against the target of Rs 148 crore.

In the financial year 2016-17, the focus is being laid on capacity building and institutionalisation of SHGs.

All active women of identified block will be trained in such a manner so that they are able to provide support to the SHGs and village organisations.