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    Loans for Widows

    Losing someone you love is probably the hardest experience to move on from in life, especially if it is your spouse. It is like losing a pillar of support. Furthermore, women, who have been unemployed, face harsher circumstances upon losing their husbands due to the added financial burden that they have to take on to stay strong and support their families.

    However, widows do not have to face such financial pressures all on their own. There are various national level and state level loans and schemes, especially designed for widows that help them in various facets of life from self-employment to even getting remarried.

    Find below some loans and schemes offered to widows in India:

    Karnataka State Women’s Development Corporation - Udyogini Scheme

    This scheme was sanctioned between 1997 and 1998 by the Government of Karnataka. It is especially meant for self-employment of women. Udyogini provides women with loans from banks and other financial institutions to undertake various business activities and/or micro enterprises, especially in the trade and service categories.

    • Age limit – This scheme is applicable to women between the ages of 18 years and 65 years.
    • Loan amount – A maximum unit cost of Rs.10 lakhs is applicable under this scheme.
    • Family income limit – The maximum family income limit to avail this scheme is Rs.40,000 p.a. This limit is also applicable to women belonging to Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

    How this scheme benefits widows:

    • The family income is not applicable to women belonging to special categories such as widows, destitute, disabled women etc.
    • Women belonging to this category will also receive a loan subsidy of 30% or Rs.10,000, depending on whichever is lesser.

    Self-Employment Schemes for Ex-Servicemen (SEMFEX) and Widows

    The Directorate General Resettlement has launched this self-employment scheme for the resettlement of widows and ex-servicemen.

    • This scheme is supported by NABARD (National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development).
    • For this scheme, NABARD provides refinancing options to various banks for the development of agriculture and related activities including farm mechanism, minor irrigation, poultry, dairy, goat and sheep rearing, plantation, horticulture, fisheries, agro-processing units such as forestry, food processing, wasteland development and so on.
    • NAMARD also supports agro-industries, bio-gas, small scale industries, cottage industries, village industries, handicrafts, handlooms and other service sector activities, specifically in rural areas.
    • Loan amount – You can borrow between Rs.10,000 and Rs.1 lakh under this scheme.
    • Interest rate – The interest rate ranges between 8.5% and 10.5% p.a. Subsidy will be provided on the interest rate charged upon completing the project.
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    Department of Women and Child Development – Scheme of Financial Assistance for Remarriage of Destitute Widows and Marriage of Devadasis

    The Department of Women and Child Development provides financial assistance for the remarriage of widows and devadasis, in both general category as well as women belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.

    • Financial Assistance – An amount of Rs.20,000 will be provided for the remarriage of destitute widows belonging to the general category and Rs.25,000 for women belonging to the Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes.
    • Age – The women between at least 18 years old and not older than 35 years. Additionally, she must be a living in Karnataka for over 5 years.
    • The widow should have an annual income according to the Integrated Rural Development Programme norms.
    • Under this scheme, an initial amount of Rs.5,000 will be provided to the couple for marriage and the remaining Rs.5,000 will be provided in the form of a National Savings Certificate which will be registered under the name of the woman.

    Losing someone can be heart wrenching, but these loans and schemes can make this difficult time of you a little less painful so you can continue being strong and help support your family.

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