Maharashtra Budget 2024-25: Govt Announces Free Cylinder Scheme, Financial Aid For Women

Maharashtra Budget 2024-25: Govt Announces Free Cylinder Scheme, Financial Aid For Women

It was predicted that the interim budget would make key announcements prioritizing women. Accordingly, a significant initiative was introduced, the 'MukhyaMantri Annapurna Yojana' (MAY), which aims to provide three free gas cylinders annually to every household.

RUCHA KANOLKARUpdated: Friday, June 28, 2024, 08:47 PM IST
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Maharashtra Budget 2024-25: Govt Announces Free Cylinder Scheme, Financial Aid For Women |

Mumbai: The Maharashtra state budget was presented to the assembly by Deputy Chief Minister Ajit Pawar on Friday, with a focus on initiatives aimed at improving women's welfare and empowerment. Government has made big announcements including three free gas cylinders for each household.

It was predicted that the interim budget would make key announcements prioritizing women. Accordingly, a significant initiative was introduced, the 'MukhyaMantri Annapurna Yojana' (MAY), which aims to provide three free gas cylinders annually to every household.

This scheme is designed to promote the use of LPG, a safer and more environmentally friendly fuel option. Under MAY, 52,16,412 families will benefit from this initiative, making gas cylinders more accessible and affordable for them. Furthermore, this move will contribute to environmental protection efforts.

Focusing on welfare and empowerment of women and girls, the "Lek Ladki" scheme was introduced, which provides financial assistance to girls born in families with yellow and orange ration cards, up to Rs. 1.01 lakh in installments until they turn 18 years old.

The Maharashtra government's "Mukhya Mantri Mazhi Ladki Bahin Yojana" will provide ₹1500 per month to eligible women between 21 to 60 years of age for economic independence, self-reliance, health & nutrition. ₹46,000 cr will be allocated annually, starting from July 2024.

"Aai Yojana" has been launched by the government for interest subvention on loans taken upto Rs.15 lakhs by small women entrepreneurs in the tourism sector. It will generate 10,000 jobs.

The government has increased financial assistance under the "Shubhmangal Samuhik Nondanikrut Vivah" scheme from ₹10,000 to ₹25,000 for eligible girls. Additionally, the "Punyashlok Ahilya Devi Holkar Mahila Startup Yojana" initiative will be launched to support women entrepreneurs, featuring an all-India startup convention to connect and promote women-led startups. Currently 6.48 lakh women's self-help groups are operational, with 7 lakhs more to be added. For this fund is increased to ₹30,000.

Maharashtra govt will reimburse tuition & exam fees for disadvantaged girls in vocational ed, covering degree and diploma courses like engineering & architecture. Expected to benefit 2.05 lakh girls, costing ₹2000 cr/year.

The state government is prioritizing comprehensive healthcare services, particularly breast and cervical cancer screening, with an allocation of Rs. 78 crores to equip all health sub-centers. Additionally, 3,324 ambulances will be operational for patient transportation, including pregnant women and children, from their homes to healthcare institutions and back, with old ambulances being replaced with new ones.

A new regulation has been introduced, requiring the inclusion of a specific naming format for individuals born after May 1, 2024. As of now, all government documents must bear the name of the person in the order of surname, mother's name, father's name, and then the given name.

The Central government's 'Har Ghar Nal, Har Ghar Jal' initiative has connected 1,25,66,986 rural homes with household piped water connections through the Jal Jeevan Mission. Work for providing household pipe connections to 21,04,932 is in progress.

The state government has launched several initiatives to promote women's empowerment. The "Pink E-Rickshaw" scheme provides financial assistance to 10,000 women from 17 cities across the state to purchase rickshaws, aiming to promote self-employment and safe travel.

Additionally, 150,000 women have achieved a milestone by becoming "Lakhpati Didi" (Women Who Have Earned One Lakh) this year, with the aim of reaching 250,000 women by the end of the year. A Unity Mall is being constructed in Ulwe - Navi Mumbai to provide a platform for women self-help groups and artisans to display and sell their products. Furthermore, Anganwadi workers, helpers, and mini Anganwadi workers are now eligible for a one-time benefit of up to ₹1 lakh in case of retirement, death, or resignation.

The government has established 100 special fast-track courts to address gender-based violence and child abuse, expediting trial processes for cases involving women and children to ensure timely justice.

As the assembly elections are just three months away, this budget is seen as a significant step towards wooing the female voters. With a slew of initiatives aimed at promoting women's welfare and empowerment, the government is expected to gain significant political mileage from this move.

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