KATHUA: While the cityscape across India is abuzz with the startup ecosystem, the rural setting is also thriving with the culture of the entrepreneur through the Startup Village Entrepreneurship Program (SVEP) under the leadership of Deendayal Antodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihood Mission (DAY-NRLM)
Kathua is the first district in Jammu and Kashmir where SVEP was deployed in 2016.
The program envisions helping the rural poor lift themselves out of poverty by establishing small businesses and providing support until the businesses stabilize.
The program focuses on creating sustainable livelihoods and self-employment by providing financial assistance and soft skills business management training, while creating local community frameworks for business promotion.
The Startup Village entrepreneurship program in Basohli Block of Kathua District has been a key contributor to improving the socio-economic condition of the residents and so far 1075 women and 478 men have benefited from the program by opening new start-ups in trade, industry and the service sector and market towards becoming self-sufficient.
The program has also brought a qualitative atmosphere of making efforts with DAY-NRLM’s hands-on, thereby reducing reliance on government jobs, besides enabling beneficiaries to provide employment opportunities to others.
The implementation of the program in Basohli block has provided employment opportunities to 1372 beneficiaries from general categories, 23 from OBC, 119 from SC, 31 from ST and 8 beneficiaries from minority class, which shows that the profit from the SVEP was derived by each part of the company.
Another key aspect of SVEP loans is that they operate in the self-help group arena and applicants must be members of SHG to obtain a loan corpus to set up the business.
Under the program, the beneficiaries have opened Karyana shops, commercial automobiles, Dhaba, boutique, beauty salon, bakery, etc. Group in particular women who have always remained active in prosperous rural economies.
The program received an overwhelming response and out of the available funds of Rs.2.5 Cr, an expenditure of Rs. 2.93 Cr was incurred in the form of disbursement of loans to entrepreneurs. The amount of Rs.43.39 lakh received as interest is also used to extend the benefits to more beneficiaries.