KOLKATA: After West Bengal Prime Minister Mamata Banerjee launched the student credit card program on June 30 to provide low-interest loans to students for higher education, more than 10,000 applications were received for the program in just six days.
“So far, a little more than 10,000 students have applied for a loan and we will forward the applications to the banks after checking the documents. The students cannot get their hands on the money. The money is transferred directly to the university. The Prime Minister has warned that there should be no allegations against this program, so we are trying to make it absolutely transparent, ”said a high-ranking official from the state finance ministry.
According to the state government, 7,000 of the 10,000 applicants have applied to study in the state, while the rest of the applicants would like the state government to finance their studies in other federal states.
According to initial estimates, the state government will have to siphon around Rs.5,000 billion from the state treasury for the program, and the number of applicants is expected to be well above the original figures.
“We expect the loan amount to reach around 1,500 billion rupees in the first year,” the official said.
According to the state government, most of the applications came from Calcutta and its suburbs.
“A large number of applications came from southern and central Kalkata. There were also some applications from Howrah and Hooghly counties. Only 1,800 of the 10,000 applications came from other districts. We hope that in the next few years there will be students applying from the other districts and the number will multiply, “the official said.
As part of the program, Banerjee has offered the students a unique financial support through which the students can take a low interest loan of up to Rs 10 lakh for their studies.
The students have to pay the amount within 15 years from the date of payment plus 4 percent interest. The state government pays the remaining interest directly to the banks. The students do not have to provide a guarantor, as the state government is the guarantor for all students.
Not only will this be extended to the students who make it to the top institutions, but the loan will also be available to support students who wish to prepare for top jobs in central and state government such as UPSC and PSC.
The educational loan is also granted to the students studying in various competitive coaching institutes to appear in IITS / IMs / NLUS / IAS / IPS / WBCS or other competitive exams. It covers various institutional / non-institutional expenses to ensure that state students are withheld from education due to lack of funding, ”said one official.
Earlier, after the State Cabinet approved the program, the Prime Minister said, “This was on our election manifesto and it is one of our most important programs like Kanyashree or Sabujshree to provide financial support to students. We want you to have your dreams.
“A student can get a low-interest loan of up to Rs 10 lakh using the credit card to start higher studies using the credit card. A student up to the age of 40 can apply for the loan to repay the loan after getting a job The interest rate would be low so that the student could easily repay the loan. “