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Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana (AGEY)

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Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana (AGEY)

Indian Government has initiated a new sub-scheme named “Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana (AGEY)” as part of the Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM). This Group under DAY-NRLM will operate road transport service in backward areas. This scheme will support to provide affordable, safe and community managed rural transport services to join villages with key services and facilities (such as access to markets, health & education) for the overall development of backward villages in all states of India. This will also offer an additional opportunity of livelihood for SHGs.

Objectives of Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana (AGEY)

  • To provide an substitute source of livelihoods to members of SHGs under DAY-NRLM by facilitating them to manage public transport services in backward areas, as recognized by the States governments.
  • This scheme will support to provide affordable, safe and community managed rural transport services to join villages with key services and facilities (such as access to markets, health & education) for the overall development of backward villages in all states of IndiaProcedure to Implement Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana

In initial phase, AGEY will be implemented in 250 Blocks in India with each Block provided upto 6 vehicles to provide transport services. As of now 52 Blocks in 8 States namely Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, Telangana, Uttarakhand, Andhra Pradesh, Jharkhand, and West Bengal with a total sum of Rs.16.06 Cr of which the Government of India share would be Rs.10.16 Crore has been approved. The balance financial support would be given by the respective States.

 Allocation of Blocks AGEY NE

The grants to the Self Help Groups (SHGs) are given in the form of Revolving Fund and Community Investment Funds. Below few benefits of this initiative

  • Interest Free Loan
  • Vehicle will be financed by the Community Based Organisations (CBOs) out of its CIF corpus. The vehicle will be purchased and owned by CBO and leased to SHG member.
  • SHG member will run the vehicle on selected route and also pay a monthly lease rental to the Community Based Organisation (CBO). Care will be taken to make sure that the monthly lease rental fixed is realistic and supports feasibility of the enterprise for the SHG member and the cost of the vehicle is also recovered from the SHG member over a maximum period of not more than 6 years.
  • Interest rate on loan will not be charged while recovering the cost through lease rental.
  • Annual cost of insurance, road tax, permit cost and maintenance cost inclusive of replacement of tyres would be borne by the CBO. The maximum financial support for such items shall not exceed Rs. 2.00 lakhs per vehicle per Community Based Organisations for the duration of the scheme from 2017-18 to 2019-20. The expenses on this account will be incurred by the Community Based Organisations, as per the requirements.
  • The running cost of the vehicle and routine maintenance charges like fuel, oil, engine oil, servicing etc. shall be taken care by the SHG member.
  • The decision regarding the ownership of the vehicle after the cost of vehicle is been fully paid up through lease rental will transfer the ownership of the vehicle to the SHG member for a consideration or sale of the vehicle to any other person.

Benefits of Loan AYGE

  • Community Based Organisations will provide an interest free loan from its CIF corpus to SHG member for purchase of the motor vehicle.
  • SHG member will pay back the loan over a maximum tenure of 6 years and accept all the costs connected with the operation of the vehicle, including annual cost of insurance, road tax, permit cost, and all other running costs of the vehicle (i.e., fuel, oil, etc.).
  • After complete payment of the loan (not including interest), the ownership of the vehicle will be transferred to the SHG member.

Eligibility Criteria For SHB Member

  • The SBH member selection will be through a transparent process considering the poverty status based on SECC data/criteria and capability of the SHG member to operate and maintain the service.
  • The SHG member selected must be literate.
  • SHG member selected must possess a valid commercial vehicle driving licence, or she should be able to identify one of her family members possessing a valid commercial vehicle licence to work as the driver or hire a person with a valid commercial vehicle driving licence as driver of the vehicle.
  • The salary of the driver shall be managed by the SHG member out of earning from the operation of the vehicle.

Documents Required

  • SHG papers (SHG member proof)
  • Aadhar card
  • Driving license

Responsibilities of Community Investment Fund (CIF)

  • The Community Investment Fund (CIF) provided to Community Based Organisations under DAY-NRLM will be utilized to support the SHG members in this new livelihoods scheme. The SHG member will be provided an interest free loan of upto 6.5 lakhs by the Community Based Organisations from its Community Investment Fund for purchase of the vehicle. Community Based Organisations will own the vehicle and lease it to an SHG member to operate the vehicle and pay lease rental to the Community Based Organisations.
  • The Blocks will be selected by States from among the Blocks where NRLM is being implemented intensively and where mature Community Based Organisations are already functioning. Backwardness, lack of transportation links and sustainability of service would be the guiding factors in the selection of Blocks and routes.
  • The choice of vehicle could be either e-riksha, 3 wheeler or 4 wheeler within a cost of not more than Rs.6.50 lakh.
  • The SHG member must run the vehicle on approved routes at pre-determined frequency as jointly agreed between the CBOs and the SHG operator based on financial feasibility and the need for transport link.
  • All vehicles registered under this initiative shall have a defined colour code and must have AGEY branding to make sure their identity and avoid diversion to other routes.
  • The SRL Mission will manage capacity building for their staff at State, District and Block levels for operating the Scheme. The members of the Community Based Organisations and the beneficiary SHG member shall also be provided adequate training in the Rural Self Employment Training Institutes (RSETIs) and other partner organizations.

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Author
Vinay Singh
Vinay Thakur is Managing Partner in Corpseed. He focused on payments, digital transformation, and financial technology for over 15 years and holds strong expertise on fintech startups, banking innovation, and investors with a keen understanding of the trends and activities of startups, banks, and investors in the space.