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Union Minister Inaugurates Credit Assistance Program for Jan Aushadhi Kendras

New Delhi: Dr. Mansukh Mandaviya, Union Minister for Chemicals & Fertilizers and Health & Family Welfare, inaugurated a credit assistance program for Jan Aushadhi Kendras, reinforcing the government’s commitment to affordable and accessible medicines for all. The event witnessed the exchange of a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) between Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI) and Pharmaceuticals and Medical Devices Bureau of India (PMBI), marking a significant step in supporting Jan Aushadhi Kendras across the country.

During the inauguration, Dr. Mandaviya presided over the MoU exchange and launched a dedicated website for credit assistance to Jan Aushadhi Kendras:

Addressing the gathering, Dr. Mandaviya highlighted the importance of affordable and accessible medicines, referring to them as ‘Sanjeevani’ for the poor, a term coined by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He acknowledged the remarkable growth of Jan Aushadhi Kendras, from 80 units in 2014 to around 11,000 units operating nationwide. Dr. Mandaviya estimated that 10 to 12 lakh people visit these Kendras daily, benefiting from substantial savings and access to essential medicines.

The Union Minister emphasized the government’s efforts in strengthening the Jan Aushadhi Kendra network, focusing on robust procurement processes, expanding product offerings, maintaining a regular supply chain, and ensuring stringent quality checks. Financial assistance was provided to individual Kendra operators, with additional support for those in remote and hilly regions, promoting financial autonomy for small entrepreneurs and expanding the reach of Jan Aushadhi Kendras.

Dr. Mandaviya expressed elation at the MoU between SIDBI and PMBI, describing it as a blessing for small and new entrepreneurs of Jan Aushadhi Kendras. He urged officials to promote the initiative at the ground level and ensure its optimal utilization.

Sivasubramanian Raman, Chairman & Managing Director, SIDBI, highlighted the innovative aspects of the credit assistance program, leveraging both GST and the Digital Public Infrastructure (DPI) of India. The program provides unsecured working capital loans for small businesses, utilizing the ‘credit layer’ as the third layer alongside identity (through Aadhar) and payment (through UPI linked with Aadhar). This approach aims to facilitate credit flow to millions of small businesses, reducing dependency on moneylenders.

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