CHIEF MINISTER Mamata Banerjee on Friday extended her government’s Kayashree Prakalpa, which had recently won the United Nations Public Service Award, to postgraduate students.
Speaking at an event organised to celebrate the success of the scheme, Mamata said: “Under this scheme, girls after turning 18, get Rs 25,000 in their bank accounts (if they don’t get married and continue with their studies). We have ‘K1’ and ‘K2’. Now, we are starting ‘K3’, which means that after completing school and college, students who go for higher studies at universities (postgraduate) and score 45 per cent marks, will get Rs 2,500 per month for science subjects and Rs 2,000 per month for arts subjects.”
While lauding the scheme, Mamata announced that some NRIs from the US have expressed their desire to sponsor research aspirations of 10 meritorious girl students from the state. “Some NRIs came to meet me yesterday and said that they are willing to bear total expenses of 10 meritorious girl students who wish to pursue research work. They also said that they will help in future research work of these students. We are working on this,” she said.
Kanyashree Prakalpa is a targeted conditional cash transfer scheme, which is aimed at checking child marriage and retaining girls in schools and other educational institutions. In the project, the government provides an annual scholarship of Rs 750 to girls between 13 to 18 years (Class VIII to XII) to continue their studies, provided they are unmarried and their parents’ annual income is below Rs 1.20 lakh. If the girl continues her studies up to the age of 18, a one-time grant of Rs 25,000 is deposited in her bank account, provided she is unmarried. According to government data, the scheme has brought almost 41 lakh adolescent girls in its fold, covering over 15,500 institutions.