Funds to the tune of Rs.2.50 crore has been allotted to Tuticorin district for the current fiscal for disbursement of business loans to beneficiaries belonging to the minority communities such as Christians, Muslims, Sikhs, Buddhists and Parsees, according to A. Mohammed Aslam, Commissioner of Minorities Welfare and Managing Director of the Tamil Nadu Minorities Economic Development Corporation (TAMCO).

Inaugurating a meeting organised jointly by the National Minorities Development and Finance Corporation, New Delhi, and TAMCO to explain the schemes meant for the economic development of minorities at the Collectorate here on Wednesday, Mr. Aslam said that the family income criterion for availing of the small business loans of TAMCO has been increased from Rs. 40,000 per annum to Rs. 81,000 per annum in the rural areas and from Rs. 55,000 per annum to Rs. 1,03,000 per annum in the urban areas from the current financial year.

Eligibility criteria

The maximum loan eligibility of a beneficiary for securing individual loans for self-employment ventures has been enhanced from Rs. 1 lakh to Rs. 10 lakh, while the maximum loan to which a member of a self-help group was eligible for starting small business activities has been increased from Rs. 25,000 to Rs. 50,000. In order to be eligible for loan, 60 per cent of the members of the concerned SHG should be from the minority communities.

The Minorities Welfare Commissioner said that TAMCO has proposed to provide education loans to students belonging to minority communities for pursuing professional degree or diploma courses.

The maximum loan eligibility under the education loan scheme would be Rs. 10 lakh for students studying in educational institutions in India and Rs. 20 lakh for those studying abroad.

The loans would be given to them on a low interest of 3 per cent per annum. Mr. Aslam explained about various schemes of TAMCO and how to avail the loan amounts before the beneficiaries.

Collector M. Ravikumar in his address said District Administration would extend all cooperation to achieve the objective of this programme through TAMCO. During the schedule, Mr. Aslam released a handbook on schemes of TAMCO and the Collector received it. Earlier, A. Sivagami, District Backward Classes and Minorities Welfare Officer, welcomed the gathering. The programme was attended by the minorities’ community, bankers and representatives of voluntary organisations.