Accident insurance scheme for self-help groups started in Bengal

An accident insurance scheme for self-help groups (SHGs) has been started in West Bengal. The implementation of the scheme has begun with the district of Purulia. It is to be extended to the district of Nadia, and in around a month, to the rest of the State. An additional 2% subsidy on interest against loans taken by the SHGs has also been announced.

About the scheme

The accident insurance scheme for the SHGs, administered by West Bengal Swarojgar Corporation Limited, has been made applicable to all members aged 18 to 60 years. The compensation for accident-related deaths has been settled at Rs 1 lakh. This compensation amount is also applicable to those who fall in the categories of total permanent disability, partial permanent disability and temporary total disability, as per an announcement by the Department of Self-Help Group & Self-Employment.

Rs 40,000 has been earmarked for accident-linked treatment and surgery. For conducting the last rites of accident victims, a maximum of Rs 2,500 would be given. To compensate a person for the wage loss suffered as a result of an accident, Rs 100 per day would be paid for a maximum period of 30 days.

Loans taken by the SHGs from banks carry an interest of 11%. Of this 11%, till now, 7% used to be paid by the State Government in the form of subsidy. Therefore, SHGs had to pay 4% of the interest. Now, the State has decided to pay an additional 2% of the interest, to lower the burden on the SHGs. Hence, from now on, the SHGs would have to pay only 2% of the interest.

As of now, this new subsidy scheme would benefit those SHGs that had applied for loans from April 2014 onwards. However, efforts are on to extend this subsidy to those groups too that have been paying their interests from earlier.

According to the State Government, more than 50 lakh members from the almost 5 lakh SHGs would be benefited by all the above-mentioned measures.


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