HYDERABAD: Industries minister K.T. Rama Rao urged Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman to redefine "Atmanirbhar Bharat" package and help the ailing MSME (micro, small and medium enterprises) sector in Telangana state.
Rama Rao on Thursday dashed off a letter to Sitharaman pointing out that there were many limitations and problems in implementing the Atmanirbhar package. He stated that it has been more than a year since Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the Atmanirbhar Bharat Rs 20 lakh crore aid package to help various sectors affected by Covid-19 crisis.
"I have been working hard to ensure that micro and medium enterprises, which are the backbone of the manufacturing sector in Telangana state, benefit from this package. I am sorry to inform you that the attractive elements in the package you have announced are the most minimal for micro and medium industries here which have been severely affected by the Coronavirus crisis," Rama Rao wrote, adding that more than 80 per cent of MSMEs in the state have been facing difficulties in the wake of the lockdown with more than 25 per cent of them losing their revenues altogether.
Rama Rao said Rs 3 lakh crore from the package was earmarked for the Guaranteed Emergency Credit Line Scheme, mainly for MSMEs. However, after the release of the scheme guidelines, MSMEs in Telangana state feel that there is nothing special about it, he said.
The minister also added that the Atmanirbhar Bharat Assistance Package announced two more schemes for debt-ridden MSME units and innovative MSMEs.
"Unfortunately, according to the information available at present, nowhere in the country, except in Telangana state, does it appear that these two schemes have started. The Subordinate Debt Scheme announced for debt-ridden MSMEs offers the lowest loan amount. However, there is no clarity on the viability of MSMEs in the current crisis situation. In such a case, the minimum loan amount you can give is not enough to meet the needs of the respective MSMEs. In addition, the Corpus Fund Scheme guidelines announced for innovative MSMEs have not yet been released," the minister added.