'Over 57 lakh girls enrolled under Kanyashree in Bengal'
Kolkata: The total budget provisions for the Kanyashree scheme till date amounts to Rs 7,588.90 crore, out of which Rs 7,237.28 crore has already been released, said minister of state for Women & Child Development Shashi Panja at the state Assembly on Monday.
"More than 57 lakh girls have already been enrolled under Kanyashree and the funds for more than 56 lakh beneficiaries have already been sanctioned," Panja said during a query that came up during the question-answer session at the Assembly.
As per figures of the Women and Child Development department, North 24-Parganas has the highest enrollment in Kanyashree at 5,49,415, followed by South 24-Parganas at 5,28,156 and Murshidabad at 5,26,482. Kolkata, meanwhile, has an enrollment count of 1,46,592.
Kanyashree Prakalpa, a brainchild of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee that was launched in 2013, is a conditional cash transfer scheme with the aim of improving the status and well-being of girl children in Bengal, by incentivising schooling of all teenage girls and delaying their marriage until the age of 18.
The scheme has two components: an annual scholarship of Rs 1,000 and a one-time grant of Rs 25,000.
The annual scholarship is for unmarried girls aged between 13-18 years, enrolled in Classes VIII-XII in government recognised regular or equivalent open school or equivalent vocational/technical training course.
The one-time grant is for girls who turn 18 at the time of application, enrolled in government recognised regular or open school/college or pursuing vocational/technical training or sports activity, or is an inmate of a home registered under Juvenile Justice Act, 2000.
The state government is also giving scholarships to girl students in the college and university level now. It has been providing scholarship of Rs 2,000 for arts students and Rs 2,500 for science students at the university level under this scheme.
Recently, the data released by National Crime Records Bureau showed that the number of girl trafficking cases in Bengal have come down to 299 in 2017. This figure was 4,168 in 2012. Experts attributed the sharp decline in trafficking to the Kanyashree scheme.