Report on Action Research Project on Gendering Microfinance under SGSY
This paper presents an overview of the Swarnjayanti Gram Swarozgar Yojana (SGSY) that was implemented in nine district blocks in India in 1999.
SGSY provides direct and indirect financial assistance to the poor. It includes central and state government grants and bank loans. The credit component is used for private investment and the grant component is used for investment, development, capacity building and creation of a revolving fund (RF). Program features include:
- Financing key activities in a block;
- Adopting project approach;
- Using cluster approach to select villages for financing;
- Upgrading technology in activity clusters;
- Encouraging self-help group (SHG) model for credit disbursement;
- Adopting a gradual multiple credit RF approach followed by credit for income generating activity;
- Emphasizing womens access to SGSY;
- Ensuring capacity building, skill training, promotion and marketing of goods.
The paper states that SGSYs planning and implementation are not satisfactory. The cluster approach is not working well. Most of the lending is tilted towards the primary sector, especially dairy activities. The program needs to focus on getting more women to form and nurture SHGs.