Maharashtra government on Tuesday launched a scheme to provide personal loans for prisoners with the aim to improve the living standard of the families of the inmates.
The Maharashtra State Co-operative Bank will give loans under the scheme up to Rs 50,000 at an interest rate of 7 percent. The scheme will be implemented on a pilot basis at Yerawada Central Jail, Pune, said Maharashtra Home Minister Dilip Walse Patil.
The decision was taken in a meeting chaired by Home Minister Patil at Sahyadri Guest House and also a Government Resolution (GR) was issued in this regard.
Launching the scheme, Patil said, “It will also be the first innovative loan scheme in the country to get a loan based on the income earned while working in a prison. With this, a welfare scheme can come in concrete form and approximately 1,055 prisoners can benefit from the scheme. Many inmates are serving long-term imprisonment. Since the majority of these inmates are prominent members of the family, their families may become distraught.”
“A feeling in the family that the person who has gone to jail has failed in his family duties. In such a situation, providing a loan to a prisoner for the needs of his family would help to increase the family’s sympathy and love for the prisoner and help maintain a healthy family atmosphere,” added the minister.
Under the scheme, the loan facility will be decided on the basis of the prisoner, prisoner’s loan limit, duration of punishment, possible relief from it, age, estimated annual working day and minimum daily income. The loan will not require a guarantor.
The Home Minister said that the loan will be given without collateral and only on a personal guarantee.
The lending bank will be solely responsible for ensuring that the loan amount is used to meet the needs of the family concerned or to pay the fees of their lawyers or for other legal matters. In addition, 1 per cent of the amount recovered by the bank from loan repayment will be given annually to the Prisoners’ Welfare Fund. (ANI)