Street vendors may now take a loan of Rs 10,000 to reestablish their businesses hit by the coronavirus-led nationwide lockdown.
Street vendors may now take a loan of Rs 10,000 to reestablish their businesses hit by the coronavirus-led nationwide lockdown. The Ministry of Housing & Urban Affairs and Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) today signed a Memorandum of Understanding, according to which a special micro-credit facility will be availed to the street vendors. While detailing out the Atma Nirbhar Bharat package, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced PM SVANidhi scheme, which aimed to benefit over 50 lakh street vendors. The scheme allows the street vendors to borrow a working capital of up to Rs 10,000, which is repayable in monthly installments in one year.
The government has also underlined that an interest subsidy of 7 per cent will be credited back to the beneficiaries who repay timely. Adding to it, the vendors can also avail the facility of the increased credit limit on timely repayment. As per the MoU terms, SIDBI will leverage the network of lending Institutions like scheduled commercials banks (SCBs), non-banking finance companies (NBFCs), microfinance institutions (MFIs), cooperative banks, small finance banks (SFBs), regional rural banks (RRBs), etc. for the scheme implementation, the statement added.
The integrated IT platform for PM SVANidhi is likely to be launched in the coming week. In the first phase, 108 cities have been selected to roll out the PM SVANidhi scheme and the disbursement of the loan is set to to start in July 2020.
Meanwhile, closed markets and the travel restrictions imposed during the nationwide lockdown forced the street vendors such as hawker, pheriwalla, rehri-patri walla, footpath dukandars, sidewalk traders, etc to shut down their businesses and wait for the markets to reopen. The street vendors mostly operate on a very small financial cushion, thus even the micro-credit support from the government is expected to give a major relief to such vendors. It is for the first time that street vendors are a part of a livelihood programme.