The State Government is planning to issue a GO on “Stree Nidhi”, a microfinance bank for women self-help groups, during the week.
In an interaction session with members of self-help groups here on Monday as a part of his three-day people-contact programme “Indiramma Bata” at Andhra University Convocation Hall, Chief Minister N. Kiran Kumar Reddy made the announcement. He said the bank would enable women to borrow up to Rs 25,000 directly for family and agricultural needs.
The bank has been proposed as a co-operative between the Government of Andhra Pradesh and Mandal Mahila Samakhyas comprising women SHGs.
He also promised that the State Government would extend interest-free loans to women. “It is enough if you pay the principal and the State Government will pay interest ranging from 12-15 per cent amounting to Rs 1,500 crore,” he said.
He assured women that his Government would give top priority to their welfare. He also promised 50 per cent reservation to women in the coming panchayat elections.