Shimla: Coronavirus pandemic has posed many challenges for the world. India has also been fighting with this disease. Himachal Pradesh government has been in a continuous attempt to control the spread of Coronavirus. State government is encouraging social distancing to control the spread of Coronavirus. A lot of people have resorted to their native state in this time of crisis as they have lost employment because of this disease.

As many as 1.40 lakh people have already returned since 25th April, 2020 to the state and many more are still coming. State Government has decided to tap potential of these professional. Given the confusion and uncertainty in these times of curfew, the State Government is adding valuable insights in the preparation of sustaining through the crisis by presenting a more beneficial scheme for the people. Mukhya Mantri Shahri Ajeevika Guarantee Yojna (MMSAGY) was launched to enhance livelihood security in urban areas by providing 120 days of guaranteed wage employment to every household in this financial year. The scheme will be implemented in all the Urban Local Bodies (ULBs) and Cantonment Boards (CBs) in Himachal Pradesh. State Government is providing this scheme for people as a powerful incentive in the crisis.

This is a big step to help people with employment opportunities. MMSAGY will also facilitate skill enhancement of persons engaged in waged labour jobs to provide them better livelihood opportunities, to set up their own enterprises by imparting entrepreneurship trainings as well as subsidy linked credit linkages and to strengthen urban infrastructure and provisioning of quality civic amenities in the ULBs.

All adult members of the household can register and are eligible to work. They should be residing within the jurisdiction of the ULB and willing to do unskilled work at projects being executed or in sanitation services provided by the ULBs. The upper age limit for providing work shall be 65 years. The eligible beneficiary skilled under this scheme will be facilitated to apply for loans under Deen Dyal Antodaya-National Urban Livelihood Mission (DAY-NULM). Beneficiaries will be issued a job card within seven days of registration. Employment will be given to the eligible beneficiary within 15 days of registration otherwise an employment allowance of Rs. 75 per day will be paid by the ULBs.

Equal wages are to be paid to both male and female workers. Wages will be directly deposited in the bank account of eligible beneficiaries by the ULBs on fortnightly basis not later than seven days after completion of 15 days employment. The eligible beneficiary will be provided skill training under DAY-NULM with minimum wage as notified by the government up to a maximum of four weeks after doing wage employment of under MMSAGY. The eligible beneficiary, who was provided skill training will be linked to the banks under Self Employment Programme (SEP) of DAY-NULM.

The beneficiaries will be employed in any ongoing or new admissible work under any state government and centre government scheme for which funds are available with ULB, in any admissible work under 15th Finance Commission or 5th State Finance Commission for which grant-in-aid provided to the ULBs and sanitation works and services as admissible under Solid Waste Management Rules, 2016 and Swachh Bharat Mission.

The scheme for loans for working capital requirements with interest subvention for the tourism sector will also be prepared by the Tourism Department.

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Rahul Bhandari is Editor of TheNewsHimachal and has been part of the digital world for last 15 years.