Prime Minister Narendra Modi initiated the Start-Up India scheme in January, 2016, which gave loans to promising entrepreneurs to start their businesses.
Now Stand Up India – a new scheme –has shifted their focus to SC/ST and women entrepreneurs exclusively and has begun their journey on the 5th of April. This scheme makes sure that women and SC/ST entrepreneurs get equal opportunities of starting their own profitable business ventures.
The scheme gives loans and advances of Rs. 10 lacs to Rs. 1 crore to these groups of the society to encourage all aspiring women and SC/ST entrepreneurs.
How is it important?
Women can now fund their dreams:
Studies show that about 90% of the women entrepreneurs rely on their own funds whereas 68% were denied loans or found it extremely hard to convince banks to give them loans. Once the Stand-Up India scheme comes into action, women will no longer find it difficult to fund their dreams.
Refunding already established startups:
The scheme not only advances loans to companies in their initial stages but also those who are already established but fall under the category of start-ups. Through Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI), the Government has started their refinancing options, at a beginning amount of Rs 10,000 crore.
Provisions for optimum benefits:
The number of women doing menial work increases whereas the number of women employed in higher-income sector still remains low. The motive is to increase the number of women involved in entrepreneurship by getting a minimum of two projects started in every bank branch in the country. This scheme believes to be of advantage to 250,000 potential lenders.
Assistance and guidance throughout:
The scheme provides assistance to both women and SC/ST borrowers through all the stages, starting from the time the loan is borrowed till their ventures are operating properly. They are introduced to bank guidelines and terms, and taught how to register online and how to use e-markets. The Government will soon be setting up a website for Stand-Up India Scheme.
Making access easier with Connect- Centres:
With the surge in the number of SC/ST and women entrepreneurs, Stand-Up Connect Centres will be established to fulfill their increasing demands, at the offices of SIDBI and National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD). ‘‘With country-wide presenceof more than 15 regional offices and 84 branches accommodating more than 600 clusters, the reach of SIDBI is massive.’’To help with the loans, the SIDBI will work with the Dalit Indian Chamber of Commerce and Industry (DICCI).