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Vishwakarma Yojana and Lakhpati Didi Scheme

  • 18 Aug 2023
  • 5 min read

For Prelims: Self-help groups, Vishwakarma Yojana, Drones, Lakhpati Didi Scheme, Swadhar Greh, Sukanya Samriddhi Yojna, Pradhan Mantri Mahila Shakti Kendra Scheme.

For Mains: Government Initiatives Related to Artisans and Women Empowerment

Source: TH

Why in News?

In the recent Independence Day address, the Prime Minister unveiled two significant initiatives aimed at empowering artisans and women's self-help groups (SHGs) across India.

  • The two initiatives are: the Vishwakarma Yojana and the provision of drones for women SHGs under Lakpati Didi Scheme.

What is Vishwakarma Yojana?

  • About:
    • The Vishwakarma Yojana is a pioneering scheme designed to uplift individuals skilled in traditional craftsmanship, particularly from the Other Backward Classes (OBC) community.
    • This scheme, named after the divine architect and craftsman Vishwakarma, seeks to preserve and enhance the guru-shishya parampara (teacher-pupil tradition) of passing down skills within families engaged in various artisanal trades.
  • Features:
    • Recognition and Support: Artisans and craftspeople enrolled in the scheme will receive a PM Vishwakarma certificate and an identity card.
      • They will also be eligible for collateral-free credit support of up to ₹1 lakh (first tranche) and ₹2 lakh (second tranche) at a concessional interest rate of 5%.
    • Skill Development and Empowerment: The Vishwakarma Yojana has been allocated a budget ranging from ₹13,000 crore to ₹15,000 crore for five financial years from 2023-2024 to 2027-2028.
      • The scheme offers a stipend of ₹500 for skill training and ₹1,500 for the purchase of modern tools.
    • Scope and Coverage: The scheme encompasses 18 traditional trades across both rural and urban areas. These trades encompass carpenters, boat-makers, blacksmiths, potters, sculptors, cobblers, tailors, and more.
    • Registration and Implementation: Registration for the Vishwakarma Yojana can be completed at common services centers in villages.
      • While the central government will provide funding for the scheme, state governments' support will also be sought.
    • Integration with Value Chains: A notable objective of the scheme is to ensure that artisans are seamlessly integrated into both domestic and global value chains, thus enhancing their market access and opportunities.

What is the Lakhpati Didi Scheme?

  • About: The government's goal is to create two crore "lakhpati didis" (prosperous sisters) in villages. This scheme aligns with the broader mission of poverty alleviation and economic empowerment.
    • Under this scheme, women will be provided skill training so that they can earn over Rs 1 lakh per year.
  • Features:
    • Drones will be provided to women SHGs for agricultural activities.
      • This initiative aims to leverage technology to transform the agricultural landscape while empowering women in rural communities.
      • Around 15,000 women's SHGs will be given training in operating and repairing drones.
        • This training will not only create new avenues for income generation but also equip women with cutting-edge skills.
      • Drones have the potential to revolutionize agriculture by enabling precision farming, crop monitoring, and pest control.
    • Under the scheme, women will be trained in skills like LED bulb making, plumbing, among others.

Note: Self-Help Groups (SHGs) are informal associations of people who choose to come together to find ways to improve their living conditions.

  • It can be defined as self governed group of people with similar socio-economic background and having a desire to collectively perform common purpose.

What are the Other Initiatives Related to Women Empowerment and Poverty Alleviation?

UPSC Civil Services Examination Previous Year’s Question (PYQs)

Q. Can the vicious cycle of gender inequality, poverty and malnutrition be broken through microfinancing of women SHGs? Explain with examples. (2021)

Q. “The emergence of Self-Help Groups (SHGs) in contemporary times pointsto the slow but steady withdrawal of the State from developmental activities”. Examine the role of the SHGs in developmental activities and the measures taken by the Government of India to promote the SHGs (2017)

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