Saying that the Stand-Up India scheme has delivered enormous benefits since its launch in 2016, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday said that the scheme would be continued for the entire period coinciding with the 15th Finance Commission period of 2020-25.
"The country is witnessing emergence of thousands of entrepreneurs from women and also from the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes, most of them assisted to set up their businesses and industry with capital provided under the Stand-Up India scheme," Sitharaman said while presenting her first Union Budget.
The scheme facilitates bank loans between Rs 10 lakh and Rs 1 crore to at least one scheduled caste or scheduled tribe borrower per bank branch for setting up a greenfield enterprise.
This enterprise may be in manufacturing, services or the trading sector.
"The banks will provide financial assistance for demand based businesses, including for example for acquisition of scavenging machines and robots," Sitharaman said.
The Finance Minister said that the scheme has made human dignity and self-esteem go up.
"The Ministry of Petroleum & Natural Gas has enabled SC/ST entrepreneurs in providing bulk LPG Transportation. In a matter of two years over 300 entrepreneurs have emerged," Sitharaman said.
"Machines and robots have been deployed to do scavenging which also saved the manual scavengers their dignity. The synthesis between stand up and start up with commercial banks playing the catalyst has brought this transformational change," she added.