STATE TIMES NEWS New Delhi: Women self-help groups in Jammu and Kashmir are setting an example in repayment of loans with less than one per cent NPA and the government is planning a Rs 500-crore package for them, official sources said on Sunday. According to the sources, the government has aided 4.5 lakh women in forming self-help groups (SHGs) in the state under the Centre’s Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana-National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM). Now the aim is to reach out to another 4.5 lakh women in the state, train them and make them financially independent, they said, adding that a proposal for providing Rs 500 crore to women SHGs has been moved by the Rural Development Ministry. “The special package for five years from 2013-14 was Rs 755.32 crore and the extended package from 2019-20 to 2023-24 is Rs 520 crore,” an official said. “We ensure that SHG accounts were opened in banks and as a result they got linked to credit provided by the Centre. The coverage of these SHGs in Jammu and Kashmir has been very good and NPA is very low, probably the lowest in the country…less than one per cent,” the official said. The official said overall NPAs of women self-help groups is very low, less than 2.5 per cent of the total funds allocated to them, but it is women from Jammu and Kashmir who are leading by example. Union Rural Development Minister Narendra Singh Tomar had earlier said women self-help groups in rural areas had set an example for the country in repaying loans. Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM) is one of the flagship programmes of the Ministry of Rural Development to alleviate rural poverty. The programme aims at mobilising all rural poor women into self-managed community institutions such as self-help groups, village organisations, cluster level federations, producer groups/companies, in a phased manner. The purpose of the mission was to promote financial inclusion of the community institutions and provide support for strengthening and diversification of livelihoods resources of the women member households.
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