Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis has increased the revolving fund allocated to women self-help groups (SHGs) in the state from Rs 60,000 to Rs 1 lakh. He announced it at a rally in Yavatmal recently.

“We are providing zero per cent interest loans to women SHGs. I am happy that these groups have 100 per cent success in loan repayment. I am glad to announce that the revolving fund provided to them has been increased to Rs 1,00,000,” said Fadnavis, Indian Express reported.

While the revolving funds are restocked every time there are withdrawals, earlier SHGs could only apply for a loan up to Rs 60,000 as the maximum amount granted through loans. These SHGs come under the state government’s Maharashtra State Rural Livelihoods Mission-UMED Abhiyan. Fadnavis revealed that earlier these SHGs were only in 36 talukas, but now they have expanded to 254 talukas.

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In Maharashtra’s Yavatmal district, 17,000 SHGs spread across 1,329 villages in 16 talukas provide livelihood to 74,000 families. “In entire Maharashtra, SHGs have prospered in 34,000 villages. Earlier, it was 30,000 SHGs and now it has increased to 2.65 lakh. Earlier, the beneficiaries were 3 lakh families and now it is 35 lakh,” said the CM.

“We are providing zero per cent interest loans to women SHGs. I am happy that these groups have 100 per cent success in loan repayment”

It was in 2016 that Fadnavis had offered interest-free loan to women SHGs in the state. He had said that the amount of interest on the loans taken by women-owned SHGs will be borne by the state government. His vision was that these SHGs enable women to become entrepreneurs and also help promote different activities in cottage and small units.

“Interest-free loan scheme is a gift to all these SHGs of women who are sincere and understand their responsibilities,” Fadnavis said, NDTV reported. SHGs have really changed the way women ventured into business by encouraging them with resources and skills to be able to become financially independent in rural India.

Picture credit- AFP

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