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The West Bengal government has rolled out Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s dream project ‘Rupashree’ which provides one time financial support to the marriages of poor women. ‘Rupashree’ scheme follows the chief minister’s ambitious ‘Kanyashree’ project which has drawn global applause. The application form for the ‘Rupashree’ scheme has been made available since Wednesday last across the state, an official said. The ‘Kanyashree’ scheme under which a beneficiary gets annual scholarship of Rs 500 and one time grant of Rs 25,000 aims at incentivizing schooling of teen aged girls and delaying their marriages until its legal age at 18.
For the latest ‘Rupashree’ scheme, a woman has to fill the application form before her marriage and submit it to the Block Development Officer (BDO) or Municipality Office. An amount of Rs 25,000 will be credited to her bank account before her marriage, the official said. A sum of Rs 1500 crore has been earmarked for the project which is expected to benefit about six lakh women belonging to the economically poor families.
Under the scheme announced on January 31 this year and is operational now, the women must be a permanent resident of West Bengal and be above 18 years at the time of their marriages with a cap on annual family income of Rs 1.5 lakh.
No minimum educational qualifications are required to apply for the scheme, the official said. The application forms for ‘Rupashree Prakalpa’ is available at the Municipality Office as well BDO and SDO, he said, adding that the application process is likely to start on line very soon. By ‘Kanyashree’ and ‘Rupashree’ schemes, the education rate of the girls will increase, he said. “Many poor families find it extremely difficult to bear the expenditure of marriage of the daughters and have to borrow at a high rate of interest to bear the expenses,” one senior official of the state government said to highlight its purpose.