Staff Reporter

KARUR: Central sector credit-linked subsidy schemes, the Prime Minister’s Rozgar Yojana and the National Rural Employment Guarantee Programme (NREGP), will be merged to become Prime Minister’s Employment Generation Programme (PMEGP) with effect from 2008-09.

The two schemes, with varying parameters, target the same set of beneficiaries. They are being implemented by the Union Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises through different agencies. Also their results need to be shored up. Hence, the Ministry has decided to merge them.

The subsidy levels will be increased from the existing levels in respect of micro enterprises to be set up by the marginalised sections. More micro enterprises up to Rs.5 lakh are proposed to be set up to benefit rural beneficiaries and help them become entrepreneurs. A proposal in this regard is at an advanced stage of consideration and approval with the Centre, a note from the Union Ministry and circulated to the agencies related to implementation of the schemes in the districts says.

The proposed PMEGP will have electronic tracking of applications from potential beneficiaries, require aggressive publicity of the Credit Guarantee Trust Fund Scheme among banks and beneficiaries, earmark upfront physical and financial targets, involve gram panchayats in publicising the scheme, besides measures to expand and strengthen training facilities for beneficiaries.

The note urges officials to achieve the targets already fixed and allotted in respect of PMRY for 2007-08 before March-end.