Kanyashree Prakalpa Scheme Current Affairs
West Bengal Government has announced to remove annual family income ceiling in eligibility criteria to be beneficiary under state’s UN award winning Kanyashree Prakalpa scheme. This will help more girls to chase their dreams with Government support. Currently only girls belonging to families with annual family income not more than Rs 1.20 lakh were entitled to get the benefits of this scheme. State government is also planning to set up “Kanyashree University” under this scheme for girls soon.
Kanyashree Prakalpa scheme
It is conditional cash transfer scheme aimed at improving status and well-being of girl child by incentivising schooling of teenage girls and delaying their marriages until the age of 18. It was launched by Mamata Banerjee led West Bengal Government (Women Development and Social Welfare department) in October 2013. It was aimed at increasing educational attainment of girls, prevention of child marriage and financial inclusion.
Objectives: Improve lives and status of the adolescent girls in State. Provide financial help to girls from disadvantaged families to pursue higher studies (now it will cover every girl from state). Prevent child marriage. Improved outcomes in terms of their health (especially facilitate the prevention of infant and maternal mortality). Contribute towards empowerment of girls in the state. Bring immeasurable benefits for the larger society as a whole.
Targeted Beneficiaries: All girl children within age of 13 to 19 in the state. Girls regularly attending institutions for education or vocational or sports training. Girls of Child Care Institutes registered under Juvenile Justice Act (JJ), 2000 within age of 18-19 years.
Components of Scheme
- Annual Scholarship of Rs. 500: It is for unmarried girls aged 13-18 years enrolled in classes VIII-XII in government recognized regular or equivalent open school or equivalent vocational or technical training course.
- One time Grant of Rs. 25,000: It is for girls turned 18 at time of application, enrolled in government recognized regular or open school and colleges or pursuing vocational or technical training or sports activity or is inmate of Home registered under JJ Act.
Progress: So far around 50 lakh girls from the state have been benefited by scheme and removal of ceiling will help another three lakh more girls annually. Since its launch, it has helped to reduce number of school drop out of girls by nearly 11.5%.The scheme was awarded United Nations Public Service Award in June 2017.
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has received the highest prize in United Nations Public Service Award for the state government’s Kanyashree Prakalpa (Girl Child) scheme in The Hague, Netherlands.
Kanyashree Prakalpa scheme of West Bengal came first among the 552 project nominations received by the UN from 62 countries.
West Bengal has been awarded in the Asia-Pacific group for the category: ‘Reaching the Poorest and Most Vulnerable through Inclusive Services and Participation‘.
Argentina was the winner in the Latin America-Caribbean Group for its programme for early childhood education. In the Western Group, the UK was the winner for its programme to prevent senior citizens from being defrauded.
Kanyashree Prakalpa is an initiative of the West Bengal government to improve the lives and the status of the adolescent girls. The scheme provides financial help to the girls from disadvantaged families to pursue higher studies. It also aims to prevent child marriage. Increased educational attainment, prevention of child marriage and financial inclusion are the objectives of the scheme. The scheme was launched by Mamata Banerjee in October 2013.
This is not the first time that Kanyashree Prakalpa has won an award. Earlier, it had also received the appreciation of the UNICEF. The scheme has covered 40 lakh school and college going girls under its umbrella. Under this scheme, cash transfers have been provided to them as scholarships as long as they continue going to school. The UN Public Service Awards were launched in 2003.