Now, a ‘startup’ loan scheme for Maharashtra policemen’s children
No educational qualification is required for the beneficiaries as it is meant to help those who are academically weakUpdated: Jun 23, 2018 00:47 IST
Taking a leaf out of the Centre’s Startup India initiative, the Maharashtra Police has launched its own skill development scheme — Kaushalya Vikas Yojna (Skill Development Programme)— for the children of constables, and lower rung officials, having poor academic performance.
“The scheme is essentially meant to encourage children from our police families who want to start their own business or shop by providing them initial financial assistance,” said Anup Kumar Singh, Inspector General of Police (IG), administration. As per the scheme, which was launched earlier this month, a R1 lakh interest-free loan would be provided to individuals trying to set up their own startup. “The waiver on interest will be for the first two years. Afterwards, a nominal amount would be charged as interest,” Singh said.
The enterprise could range from mobile sales/repair shop, electrical/hardware store to car/bike garage or photocopy shops. “It can be any skilled initiative that will help the person to earn a livelihood and provide financial security,” Singh said. Only the wards of constables, police naiks, head constables and Assistant Police Sub-Inspectors (ASI) are eligible for this scheme.
A senior official from the Director General of Police (DGP) office said no educational qualification is required for the beneficiaries as it is meant to help those who are academically weak. Only one ward from a family can apply for the loan.
To apply for the scheme, Singh said, the applicant has to submit a written proposal before the commissioner (in police commissionerates) or Superintendent of Police (SP) in rural areas, detailing the type of startup he intends to set up.
He said the nine police commissionerates and 36 SP offices have already been disbursed the required grants to flag off the scheme. “Annually 15 persons would be availed of the facility in each of the commissionerates, while 10 beneficiaries would be selected by each of the 36 SPs,” Singh added. This would mean 495 individuals would benefit from the scheme every year.
A constable posted in a suburban police station in Mumbai said that the scheme would be more beneficial in rural areas than in the metro or tier-two cities because of the cost factors. “Setting up a venture in cities like Mumbai, Pune or Nagpur involves more investment as compared to places like Satara or Nandurbar. Rentals, cost of labour and other logistics are costlier in cities than rural areas,” the constable said.
Another constable posted in a Thane (rural) police station said, “With that amount, one can at least pay the security deposit and rental for some months for a small shop. It can be used to start a business on a partnership basis,” he said. “Something is better than nothing.”
Constables and lower-rung staff (ASI included) constitute over 95% of the 2.25-lakh-strong Maharashtra Police. Apart from the skill development programme, the central police welfare fund has also doled out several other monetary assistance schemes for meritorious children belonging to constabulary families in the past.
First Published: Jun 23, 2018 00:47 IST