The Government of India has decided to launch a new sub-scheme named “Aajeevika Grameen Express Yojana (AGEY)” as part of the Deendayal Antyodaya Yojana – National Rural Livelihoods Mission (DAY-NRLM).
The Self Help Groups under DAY-NRLM will operate road transport service in backward areas. This will help to provide safe, affordable and community monitored rural transport services to connect remote villages with key services and amenities (such as access to markets, education and health) for the overall economic development of backward rural areas.
This will also provide an additional avenue of livelihood for SHGs.
The Community Investment Fund (CIF) provided to Community Based Organization (CBOs) under DAY-NRLM will be utilized to support the SHG members in this new livelihoods initiative.
The beneficiary SHG member will be provided an interest free loan by the CBO from its Community Investment Fund up to Rs.6.50 lakh for purchase of the vehicle. Alternative, CBO will own the vehicle and lease it to an SHG member to operate the vehicle and pay lease rental to the CBO.
- Ajeevika Grameen Express Yojana will be initially implemented in 250 Blocks in the country on pilot basis with each Block provided up to 6 vehicles to operate the transport services.
- The Blocks will be selected by States from among the Blocks where NRLM is being implemented intensively and where mature CBOs 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 State Rural Livelihood Missions (SRLMs) will do a feasibility study and traffic survey in the selected blocks to identity the routes and the number and capacity of vehicles which can be operated on sustainable basis
- The SRLMs will be co-ordinating with State Transport Department for issue of permit for the vehicle.
- The SHG member shall run the vehicle on approved routes at pre-determined frequency as jointly agreed between the CBO and the SHG operator based on financial viability and the need for transport link.
- All vehicles under the scheme shall have a defined colour code and carry Ajeevika Grameen Express Yojana branding to ensure their identity and avoid diversion to other routes.
- The State Rural Livelihood Mission will arrange capacity building for their staff at State, District and Block levels for operating the Scheme.