They can’t work from home. For their livelihood, it is not just sufficient that they come out from home – it also needs people on streets. We are talking about street vendors. Among many sectors that took an immediate hit during the lockdown, lakhs of people who earn their living by selling food and other products on the sides of the streets saw their business crumble overnight.
Now, the unlock phase offers an opportunity to get back to business and gradually find some normalcy. But for the people who were forced to live for months with whatever little savings they had, resuming their activity just like that is not possible. Also, with the scare of pandemic still looming, nobody can expect people to consume like they did before. Here, the Modi government is coming to the rescue of street vendors in rebuilding their lives.
On the one hand it is facilitating easy loans for street vendors under PM SVANidhi scheme. On the other hand, it is also taking measures to provide them with an online platform best suited for conducting business in this pandemic phase.
Our previous article had covered many finer aspects of PM SVANidhi including the ease in application and letter of recommendation for those who don’t have identity cards. There are other developments on this scheme and here is an update.
As on October 6, 2020, over 20.50 lakh loan applications have been received under the PM SVANidhi Scheme. Out of these over 7.85 lakh loans have been sanctioned and over 2.40 lakh loans disbursed.
The Application Programming Interface (API) integration between the PM SVANidhi Portal and the State Bank of India portal has been launched. This integration will facilitate seamless flow of data between the two portals i.e. PM SVANidhi Portal and SBI’s eMudra Portal in a secure environment and expedite the loan sanctioning and disbursement process. Similar integration with other banks is on card for which a consultative meeting will be held shortly.
Providing Online Avenues for Street Vendors
A month back when Prime Minister Narendra Modi held virtual interactions with the beneficiaries, he had said that efforts are being made to provide an online delivery platform to street food vendors on the lines of big restaurants.
Within a few weeks, Ministry of Housing and Urban Affairs joined forces with the online food delivery platform Swiggy to onboard street vendors on their service. According to the plan, “The street vendors will be helped with PAN and FSSAI (Food Safety and Standards Authority of India) registration, training on technology/partner app usage, menu digitisation and pricing, hygiene and packaging best practices. Upon the successful completion of the pilot, MoHUA and Swiggy plan to expand this initiative across the country in phases.”
Thus, while helping the street vendors to resume their business, government is also helping in scaling up their business.
PMSVANidhi in a Gist
PM SVANidhi scheme was launched on June 01, 2020 for providing affordable working capital loan to street vendors to resume their livelihoods post-lockdown. This scheme targets to benefit over 50 lakh Street Vendors who had been vending on or before 24 March, 2020, in urban areas including those from surrounding peri-urban/ rural areas.
Under the Scheme, the vendors can avail a working capital loan of up to ₹10,000, which is repayable in monthly instalments in the tenure of one year. On timely/ early repayment of the loan, an interest subsidy at 7% per annum will be credited to the bank accounts of beneficiaries through Direct Benefit Transfer on quarterly basis. There will be no penalty on early repayment of loan.
The scheme promotes digital transactions through cash-back incentives up to an amount of ₹1,200 per annum.