VIJAYAWADA: Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy on Wednesday launched the Jagananna Thodu scheme by giving interest-free loans worth Rs 905 crore to 9.05 lakh small traders. Under the scheme, small and petty vendors and artisans can take loans from banks to meet their working capital needs.
The Chief Minister said that during his 3,648 km padayatra, he witnessed the plight of small vendors and artisans. “Without these small traders, not only our livelihood but also our economy would be in jeopardy,” Jagan observed.
As the vendors are in the unorganised sector, banks do not give them loans to run their business, so they borrow money from private parties at high interest rates and often get stuck in debt. The Chief Minister said volunteers and welfare assistants of village/ward secretariats will help identify beneficiaries, collect their applications and provide bank loans.
Through the scheme, about Rs 1,000 crore is being lent to nearly 10 lakh people, where the government will be paying interest of Rs 60 crore to Rs 100 crore annually and if it is taken for 10 years, it will be Rs 1,000 crore. The government is implementing the scheme in collaboration with banks
The banks shall credit the loan amount of Rs 10,000 to the beneficiaries’ accounts within a week or 10 days. The beneficiaries will also be provided with QR-based smart ID cards and if they repay the loan on time, the State government will reimburse the interest once in every three months directly to the beneficiaries’ accounts, and further, they will be eligible to take the next loan.
Jagan stated that vegetable vendors, fruit vendors, small shopkeepers, pushcart vendors and traditional artisans are eligible to apply for the scheme. If eligible persons are not covered under the scheme so far, they can apply through volunteers, and upon verification, they will be provided with the scheme benefits in a month or two. Also, they can call on the 1902 toll-free number to get themselves enrolled.Ministers Peddireddy Ramachandra Reddy, Kodali Venkateswara Rao, Botcha Satyanarayana, Adimulapu Suresh, Sankara Narayana, other officials and bankers were present at the launch event.
BJP cries foul, says it’s nothing but PM SVANidhi
The BJP, however, said Jagananna Thodu is nothing but the Central government’s PM SVANidhi scheme.
Taking to Twitter, BJP state general secretary S Vishnu Vardhan Reddy said, “PM SVANidhi has been brought in as part of the Atma Nirbhar Bharat package post-Covid-19. It is shameful that the Chief Minister has changed the scheme’s name and publicised as his government’s scheme.”
Vishnu Vardhan Reddy pointed out that “Sticker CM” Jagan Mohan Reddy has usurped one more Central scheme and affixed his name on it. “Modi Govt grants fund for PM SVANidhi Scheme, CM @ysjagan garu renames the scheme after himself and takes all the credit. This is really a matter of shame and should be condemned,’’ Vishnu tweeted. Under PM SVANidhi, the vendors availing of loans are eligible to get an interest subsidy of seven per cent. However, as per the AP scheme, the interest will be paid by the State government.