Kerala to launch rehabilitation programme for expatriates

Kerala to launch rehabilitation programme for expatriates

Kerala government has decided to launch a comprehensive rehabilitation programme, giving thrust on subsidised self-employment schemes for Malayali expatriates returning to the state.

Addressing a press meet here today, State Cultural Affairs Minister and NORKA, K C Joseph said the programme is envisaged to be implemented under the Chief Minister's 'Mission 676'.

"As part of the programme, low interest loans and subsidies will be provided to the returnees to start business ventures. The government will meet the capital subsidy and interest subsidy of the schemes," the minister said.

The project mainly targets the rehabilitation of Gulf returnees in the wake of the recently announced 'Nitaqat' law in Saudi Arabia, a new labour law which had affected thousands of Malayalees working there.

He said at least 50 entrepreneurs from each district would get loans within 100 days.
With the support of the local banks, adalats would be organised at the district level to provide loans for all deserved expatriates, he said adding that a total of Rs 50 crore would be spent for the programme in the initial phase.

The Non-resident Keralites Affairs (NORKA)'s advisory committees would be formed in various countries--first in Gulf countries and later in other parts, he said.

"Steps will also be taken to provide legal assistance to Keralites who are punished for minor offences in Gulf countries. The government will join hands with the Indian Embassy and various expatriate organisations for that," Joseph added. 

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