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Rs 933 cr distributed to 28,000 MSMEs in Assam: Sonowal

PTI

Guwahati

Assam Chief Minister Sarbananda Sonowal on Tuesday said Rs 933 crore have been provided as assistance to 28,000 MSME units in the state under the Rs 3,00,000 crore package announced for the sector by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

 Sonowal also said that his BJP-led government has launched a special scheme for providing free houses to the labourers of Assam’s tea industry.  “We have already disbursed Rs 933 crore to 28,000 MSME units across the state,” he said.

 Sonowal said the special scheme, announced by the prime minister to assist the MSME sector, badly hit by the coronavirus pandemic, will cover all the 66,000 MSME units in Assam.

 Chief Minister said he took the initiative of holding the state level bankers’ meeting for seamless disbursement of the funds to the distressed MSME sector so that the entrepreneurs get relief after the losses they suffered due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Rs 3 lakh crore package for the MSME sector, part of the Rs 20,00,000 crore economic package announced by the prime minister last month, offers collateral-free loans for small businesses.

Referring to the free housing scheme launched for the tea garden labourers of Assam, Sonowal said the initial 2,000 houses will be constructed for the labourers of the Assam Tea Corporation (ATC) at a cost of Rs 24 crore.

 “This is for the first time since Independence, the government is going to provide free housing facility for the tea garden labourers with modern amenities like LED bulbs, running water and toilets,” he said.

Chief Minister said the second phase of the free housing scheme for the tea garden labourers will be launched by November for construction of another 2,000 houses. The ATC is a public sector undertaking established in 1972. It comprises 14 tea estates spread over 13,000 hectares of prime land scattered over six districts of Assam.

 The corporation directly employs more than 16,000 workers. It produces premium CTC and Orthodox tea in its own factories besides supplying green leaf to other tea companies.

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