Bihar govt to distribute masks, soaps in rural areas

Patna (Bihar) [India], May 13 (ANI): Bihar government has decided to distribute face masks and soaps to all families in the rural areas, for which Rs 160 crore have been allocated.

"We have decided to provide four masks and one soap each to all families in the rural areas, free of charge. The state government will spend Rs 160 Crore for this purpose. We are also strengthening the facilities at quarantine centres," Bihar's Deputy Chief Minister Sushil Kumar Modi told ANI.

Speaking on the announcement by Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman today, Modi said: "Bihar will get the biggest benefit out of it that there are maximum numbers of MSMEs here. Today the definition of MSMEs has been revised. Now a large number of industries & organisations working under service sector will come under MSMEs."

"The Central government has announced collateral-free automatic loans to MSMEs worth Rs 3 lakh Crore. This will give benefit to Bihar," he said.

Sitharaman announced a series of liquidity measures for millions of small businesses reeling under the impact of Covid-19 lockdown, including collateral-free automatic loans worth Rs 3 lakh crore.

Borrowers with up to Rs 25 crore outstanding and Rs 100 crore turnover will be eligible. These loans will have a four-year tenure and have a moratorium for 12 months on principal payment.

There will be a 100 per cent credit guarantee cover to banks and non-banking finance companies on principal and interest. The scheme can be availed till October 31.

"This will enable 45 lakh micro, small and medium enterprise (MSME) units to resume business activity and also safeguard jobs," said Sitharaman. (ANI)