NEW DELHI, Sept 17: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Sunday launched the ‘PM Vishwakarma' scheme on the occasion of ‘Vishwakarma Jayanti', under which traditional craftsmen and artisans will be provided loan assistance at a minimal interest rate without the need for collateral.
With a financial outlay of Rs 13,000 crore for a period of five years, the scheme will benefit about 30 lakh families of traditional artisans and craftsmen, including weavers, goldsmiths, blacksmiths, laundry workers, and barbers.
The goal of the scheme is to enhance the accessibility and quality of products and services offered by traditional artisans and craftsmen.
The scheme offers collateral-free enterprise development loans of Rs 1 lakh (first tranche for 18 months repayment) and Rs 2 lakh (second tranche for 30 months repayment).
A concessional rate of interest of 5 per cent will be charged from the beneficiary with interest subvention cap of 8 per cent to be paid by the Ministry of Micro Small and Medium Enterprises. The credit guarantee fees will be borne by the central government.
The scheme also entails benefits such as recognition as a Vishwakarma through a certificate and ID card and skill verification followed by 5-7 days (40 hours) of basic training. Interested candidates can also enrol for 15 days (120 hours) of advanced training and a stipend of Rs 500 per day will be provided.
Besides, a Rs 15,000 grant will be provided as a toolkit incentive and an incentive for digital transaction of Rs 1 per transaction for up to 100 transactions monthly.
A National Committee for Marketing (NCM) will provide services such as Quality Certification, Branding & Promotion, E-commerce linkage, Trade Fairs advertising, publicity and other marketing activities.
An artisan or craftsperson working with hands and tools and engaged in one of the 18 family-based traditional trades mentioned in the scheme, in the unorganised sector on a self-employment basis, shall be eligible for registration under PM Vishwakarma.
The minimum age of the beneficiary should be 18 years on the date of registration.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi turned 73 on Sunday. (Agencies)