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Modi to launch ‘PM Vishwakarma’ scheme on Sunday

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New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi will launch a new scheme “PM Vishwakarma” to help artisans and craftsmen and those engaged in traditional skills on the occasion of ‘Vishwakarma Jayanti’ on September 17.
A statement said it has been Modi’s sustained focus to give support to people engaged in traditional crafts not only financially but also to keep the age-old tradition, culture and diverse heritage alive and flourishing through local products, art and crafts.
The scheme, first announced by Modi on Independence Day, will be fully funded by the Union government with an outlay of Rs 13,000 crore. Under the scheme, the prospective beneficiaries will be registered free of charge through common services centres using biometric-based PM Vishwakarma portal.
September 17 also happens to be the birthday of the prime minister, who will turn 73 on Sunday.
The scheme’s targeted beneficiaries will be provided recognition through PM Vishwakarma certificate and ID card, skill upgradation involving basic and advanced training, toolkit incentive of Rs 15,000, collateral-free credit support up to Rs lakh (first tranche) and ?2 lakh (second tranche) at a concessional interest rate of five per cent, incentive for digital transactions and marketing support, the statement said. It added that the scheme aims to strengthen and nurture the “Guru-Shishya parampara” or family-based practice of traditional skills.
The prime focus of the scheme is improving the quality as well as the reach of products and services of artisans and crafts people and to ensure that they are integrated with the domestic and global value chains, it said.
The scheme will provide support to artisans and crafts people of rural and urban areas across India. Eighteen traditional crafts will be covered under it: carpenters, boat-makers, armourer, blacksmiths, hammer and tool kit makers, locksmiths, goldsmiths, potters, sculptors, stone-breakers, cobblers, masons, basket/mat/broom makers and coir weavers, doll and toy makers, barbers, garland makers, washer men; tailors, and fishing net makers.
It is mostly the members of Other Backward Classes who have been traditionally engages in these occupations and the scheme is also seen as an attempt by the ruling BJP to reach out to a key voting segment.

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