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Scheme: Definition & Meaning and How it Works

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Scheme: Definition & Meaning and How it Works

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Securing one’s future, providing children with best education, and accomplishing good financial health are the top priorities of everybody’s life. And in order achieve this, apart from their regular jobs, different schemes are also launched by the government to support such causes. Schemes are good alternatives that boost your chances of achieving your goals.

Before delving deeper into different types of schemes, let’s first understand the term scheme. 

What is a Scheme?

Schemes are a form of financing introduced by the state or central governments to provide financial assistance. Schemes aim to help us achieve specific goals like completing education, starting our own firm, securing our kid's future, and many more things. 


The main goal of launching different schemes is to encourage people to achieve their objectives and support those who don't have the means to do it. However, applicants must be eligible under the schemes if they want to utilise all the benefits available. Let's look at some of the best schemes by the Indian government to offer financial help in different sectors. 

Schemes for Students

1. Bihar Free Laptop Yojana

The Bihar Free Laptop Initiative has been introduced by the state government for students. Under this programme, students who pass their 10th and 12th grade examinations are given free computers by the government. The purpose of this curriculum is to help students achieve their academic objectives while also preparing them to use technology effectively.

2. Prime Minister’s Special Scholarship Scheme (PMSSS)

In 2011, PMSSS was introduced to give funding to 5,000 worthy students each year to attend private and public universities around the nation. This scheme aims to increase and expand work prospects for J&K students as well as to build the skills of young people in J&K so they can compete in regular courses. The PMSSS selected students may get a scholarship of up to Rs. 3 Lakhs yearly in addition to other grants.

3. Samriddhi Scheme for SC/ST Students

This programme’s major goal is to support SC/ST students who desire to launch their own companies or enterprises after finishing their formal education or during their last year of school. The government offers Rs. 20 Lakhs credit aid.

4. Saksham Scholarship Scheme

This scheme was established by the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and is administered by the All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE). The programme is particularly created to encourage and assist impaired students in continuing technical education. Through this programme, individuals with disabilities may finish their education and prepare for future endeavours. Under this scheme, selected students get financial help of Rs. 50,000 each year. 

5. Post-Matric Scholarship Scheme for Minorities

The Prime Minister launched the New 15-Point Programme for Minorities' Welfare in June 2006. The programme’s objective is to provide scholarships to meritorious minority students from economically underprivileged regions in order to improve their access to higher education, raise the number of those students who complete their higher education, and increase their employability. Financial help is available through this award, particularly for courses from the eleventh grade through the PhD level.

Schemes for Startups

1. Atal Innovation Mission (AIM) 

NITI Aayog introduced this Startup India scheme in 2016. The Atal Innovation Mission seeks to enhance India's inventive and entrepreneurial culture. It is a part of a bigger framework, and part of its mandate is to encourage innovation by developing new programmes and policies to boost growth across many economic sectors. The shortlisted companies are given a five-year loan worth Rs. 10 Crores under this programme.

2. Startup Indian Initiative 

The Prime Minister introduced the Startup India Initiative on January 16, 2016. By June 3, 2021, more than 50,000 businesses had received recognition under this programme, offering tax advantages to business owners over a little more than five years.

The key pillars of this initiative are to support startups by simplifying processes and handholding them through the process, providing funding and tax benefits and creating incubator labs, and receiving other grants.

3. MUDRA Loans

MUDRA loans or Micro Units Development and Refinance Agency were introduced to increase credit availability, provide loans to micro-businesses and foster the growth of small companies in rural areas. The major purpose of introducing this scheme was to help small Indian businesses that want to expand. MUDRA banks provided start-up loans of up to Rs. 10 Lakhs to small firms. The loans have been classified as Tarun, Shishu, and Kishor, depending on the amount of loan taken.

4. MSME Business Loans in 59 Minutes

It is one of the most lucrative loan schemes established by the government in September 2018. The plan allows both new and current businesses to benefit from the financial help given by the scheme. The loans granted under these programmes range up to Rs. 1 Crore and take only 59 minutes to get approval. However, it may take up to 8 to 12 days to complete the disbursal process. 

5. eBiz Portal 

This is the first government-to-business (G2B) online forum established to modernise the country and create a friendly online environment for enterprises. The eBiz Portal, developed by Infosys, was established through public-private cooperation. It acts as a hub for communication for all Indian company owners and investors. 

Schemes for Women Empowerment 

1. Beti Bachao Beti Padhao 

It is one of the Prime Minister's most significant women's empowerment schemes. On January 22, 2015, Haryana initiated this project with the goal of ensuring the survival, protection, and education of female children. The scheme aims to address the issue of the recent decline in the sex ratio, create societal awareness, and improve the efficacy of welfare benefits for girls.

2. Women Helpline Scheme

The Women Helpline initiative strives to offer 24/7 emergency support to women who have suffered harassment in either public or private environments. It was introduced on April 1st, 2015, and is one of the most successful government programmes. The government established a toll-free helpline number (181) to provide immediate aid in an emergency. Women in any state and union territory in the nation can call this number. This project also promotes awareness of programmes and activities aimed at empowering women.

3. Mahila Shakti Kendras (MSK)

This scheme was launched in India in 2017 to help women develop their skills, obtain employment, and increase their digital literacy.  The government intends to reach the 115 districts with the greatest poverty rates by building 920 Mahila Shakti Kendras. Giving women access to services including high-quality healthcare, education, employment opportunities, and counselling is the primary objective of this initiative.

4. Rajiv Gandhi National Creche 

The Indian government launched the National Creche scheme in 2006 to provide various facilities to children of working mothers. This project provides childcare services to working women and promises to improve their health and nutrition. Furthermore, by training parents on how to enhance childcare practices, this women empowerment yojana improves children's physical, social, and holistic development as well as raises awareness about children's health.

5. UJJAWAL

This scheme commenced in December 2007. It is a comprehensive plan designed by the Indian government to combat human trafficking and to recover, rehabilitate, and reintegrate survivors of sexual exploitation. NGOs generally carry out the plan in order to provide immediate aid and benefit to victims of human trafficking.

Schemes for Senior Citizens 

1. Atal Pension Yojana

This scheme intends to give pensions to members of the unorganised sector of society, including maids, gardeners, delivery boys, etc. You can apply for this programme even if you work in the private sector or for a company that does not offer pension benefits. The Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority is in charge of overseeing this scheme. On reaching the age of 60, this programme offers choices for receiving a fixed pension ranging from Rs. 1,000 to Rs. 5,000. Individuals who wish to invest in this programme must be between the ages of 18 and 40 and must invest for a minimum of 20 years.

2. National Pension Scheme (NPS)

It is a voluntary investing scheme that commenced in 2004. You can invest in this plan to receive earnings after your retirement. The National Pension Scheme is overseen by the Central Government and the PFRDA (Pension Fund Regulatory and Development Authority). 

Employees of the public, private, and unorganised sectors are eligible for this pension plan. Military personnel, on the other hand, are not eligible for the NPS. The scheme involves you investing a certain amount voluntarily. Once you reach retirement age, you can withdraw 60% of the corpus, and the balance is invested in an annuity scheme where you receive a pension for the remainder of your life.

3. Senior Citizen Savings Scheme (SCSS)

It is one of the most popular schemes for senior citizens, and the Indian government has backed it since August 2004. It offers stability and a steady return to its investors in the form of interest payments. The Ministry of Finance reviews the scheme's interest rates every quarter. This plan's current interest rate is 7.4%. You may begin investing in this plan with a minimum value of Rs. 1,000 and a maximum of Rs. 15 Lakhs. The tenure of this scheme is for 5 years. This plan also allows you to withdraw money prematurely. However, you are required to pay penalties for the same.

4. SBI Monthly Income Scheme for Senior Citizens 

The government has launched this programme to provide senior citizens with the chance to receive a fixed monthly income after a defined amount of time. Customers who participate in this plan must make a single lump-sum payment; in exchange, they will get the returns in EMIs. The original amount is paid up in part of the initial value, and interest is accrued at quarterly rates. 

Starting deposit for this scheme is Rs. 1,000, and the maximum is Rs. 15 Lakhs. 7.4% is the current interest rate.

5. Pradhan Mantri Vaya Vandana Yojana (PMVVY)  

It is a retirement-accumulation pension plan that LIC oversees (Life Insurance Corporation). It is an instant annuity plan that, after you make a lump sum investment, gives you a fixed amount on a monthly basis. This three-year senior investment option was introduced on May 4, 2017, and will end on March 31, 2023. You can start investing in this scheme with a minimum amount of Rs. 1.5 Lakhs and a maximum of Rs. 15 Lakhs. 

Apart from the above-mentioned schemes, there are other beneficial initiatives as well that you must be aware of. 

1. Ayushman Bharat Yojana

The Ayushman Bharat Yojana is an initiative that offers health insurance to Indian residents. It was launched on September 23, 2018. The recipients of this programme receive annual family floater insurance coverage of up to Rs. 5 Lakhs. 

2. Pradhan Mantri Gramin Awaas Yojana

The Pradhan Mantri Gramin Awaas Yojana, formerly known as the Indira Awaas Yojana, went into effect on April 1, 2016. This plan was implemented to fill gaps in the rural housing programme and to help the government meet its pledge to provide "Housing for All" by 2022.

This programme seeks to give a house with all required facilities to the homeless and households living in decrepit housing.

3. Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Antyodaya Yojana

The Deen Dayal Upadhyaya Antyodaya Yojana (DAY) combines two government programmes: the National Urban Livelihoods Mission (NULM) and the National Rural Livelihoods Mission (NRLM). NULM was established by the Ministry of Housing and Urban Poverty Alleviation. In June 2011, the Ministry of Rural Development launched NRLM. DAY's mission is to elevate the urban and rural underprivileged by offering skill development and enhancing their livelihood prospects.

NULM is being used to reduce poverty and vulnerability among urban poor households. NRLM equips the rural poor with effective and efficient institutional frameworks for improving access to financial services and raising household income through viable livelihood options.

4. Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojna

The Ministry of Skill Development and Entrepreneurship introduced the Pradhan Mantri Kaushal Vikas Yojna in 2015. The goal of this initiative is to provide industry-relevant skill training to Indian youngsters in order for them to earn a better living. Under this plan, school or college dropouts or youngsters without a job with valid IDs and bank accounts can receive skill training and employment prospects.

5. Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana

This scheme was launched in August 2014. This programme’s goal is to ensure that everyone in India who does not have a bank account is financially included. It strives to give everyone inexpensive access to financial services. Any bank branch or business correspondent location will allow a person to create a new account under this plan with no deposit.

6. Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana

The Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana is a government-sponsored social assistance programme that began on May 1, 2016. It is a Ministry of Petroleum and Natural Gas initiative that provides LPG cylinders at a reduced rate to women living below the poverty line.

This scheme aspires to create a smoke-free rural India by connecting the whole country to LPG and benefiting about five crore families. Any adult woman from a low-income family who does not have an LPG connection in her household can apply for this scheme. 

Wrapping up

Schemes launched by the central and state governments aid in those who require help but do not have the proper means of getting help. These schemes also helps in achieving your financial objectives and fulfilling your long-term goals. However, it is important that you do your homework and ensure you meet the eligibility criteria before applying for schemes. 

FAQs

1. What is a scheme example?

Schemes are a form of financing introduced by the state or central governments. The main goal of launching different schemes is to encourage people to achieve their objectives if they lack the resources to do it. 

Several types of schemes are available: Women Empowerment Schemes, Senior Citizen Schemes, Post Office Savings Schemes, Student Schemes, Healthcare Schemes, etc.

2. What does a scheme mean in government?

Government schemes are established to give financial assistance to individuals to pursue their higher education, increase awareness about women's empowerment, secure the future of kids, establish a new organisation or expand the existing one, and many other things. However, to receive the benefit of any scheme, the applicant must be eligible.

3. What does a scheme mean in business?

In business, a scheme refers to policies or plans adopted by organisations in order to increase their profitability, production, manpower, etc. The government has also introduced several business schemes for individuals to start a new organisation or expand the existing one. 

4. What are the types of schemes?

Several types of schemes have been introduced by the government, including Atal Pension Yojana, Samriddhi Scheme for SC/ST Students, Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojana, MUDRA Loans, Prime Minister’s Special School.

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