The Self Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers (SRMS)

The Self Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers (SRMS) was introduced in January, 2007 with the objective of rehabilitating the remaining manual scavengers and their dependents in alternative occupations by March, 2009.  However, as this could not be done by the target date, the Scheme was extended upto March, 2010, with a provision for the coverage of spill-over of beneficiaries even thereafter, if required.  As per the updated number, reported by States/UTs, after launch of the Scheme, 1.18 lakh manual scavengers and their dependents in 18 States/UTs were identified for implementation of the Scheme.

The Central Sector Self Employment Scheme for Rehabilitation of Manual Scavengers (SRMS) has been revised under the “Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013” effective from Nov., 2013.


The objective of the scheme is to assist the manual scavengers, identified during various surveys, for their rehabilitation in alternative occupations.


Manual Scavengers, as defined under the “Prohibition of Employment as Manual Scavengers and their Rehabilitation Act, 2013”  and their dependents, irrespective of their income, are eligible for assistance under the Scheme. 

  • Definition of Manual Scavenger and their dependents

“Manual Scavenger” means a person engaged or employed by an individual or a local authority or a public or private agency, for manually cleaning, carrying, disposing of, or otherwise handling in any manner, human excreta in an insanitary latrine or in an open drain or pit into which human excreta from insanitary latrines is disposed of, or on a railway track, before the excreta fully decomposes and the expression “manual scavenger” shall be interpreted accordingly.

The dependent of manual scavengers is one who is a member of their family or is dependent on them.  Each individual manual scavenger and his/her spouse or children who are of 18 years of age and above, who are not employed (other than manual scavengers) will be provided assistance.  For the purpose of training, the age of the dependent to be eligible would be reduced by the duration of the training so that immediately after getting the training he/she can be provided other assistance immediately after attaining the age of 18 years.

  • Cash assistance

The identified manual scavengers, one from each family, would be eligible for receiving cash assistance of Rs. 40,000, immediately after identification. The beneficiary is allowed to withdraw the amount in monthly instalments of maximum of Rs. 7000.

  • Quantum of loan

Loan upto a maximum cost of Rs. 10 lacs will be admissible under the scheme and Rs. 15 lacs in case of sanitation related projects like Vaccum Loader, Suction Machine with Vehicle, Garbage Disposal Vehicle, Pay & Use Toilets etc. which are extremely relevant for the target group, with high success rate and income.

  • Rate of interest
    For projects upto Rs. 25000/-   5% p.a. (4% p.a. for women Beneficiaries)
   For projects above Rs. 25000/- 6% p.a.
  • Moratorium period

Moratorium period will be two years.

  • Repayment period

Repayment period will be five years (including moratorium period of two years) for projects upto Rs. 5 lacs and seven years (including moratorium period of two years) for projects above Rs. 5 lacs.

  • Subsequent loan

Beneficiaries will be allowed to avail second and subsequent loan from Banks, if required, without capital and interest subsidy7 and other grants under the Scheme.

  • Penalty

In case of diversion of funds by beneficiaries for their other needs, the Banks can initiate action as per their policy and rules in this regard.  In case, it is found that the beneficiary has diverted the subsidy for any purpose, other than for which the assistance was provided then -

(i)  He/she will be liable to repay the entire amount of subsidy immediately with a penal interest of 9% p.a., and

(ii) He/she will become ineligible for any assistance under the scheme, in future.

  • Other assistance

Manual Scavengers are also eligible for –

  • Credit linked back-end capital Subsidy
Range of project cost Rate of subsidy
Upto Rs. 2 lacs 50% of the project cost
Rs. 2 lacs – Rs. 5 lacs Rs. 1 lac + 33.3% of the project cost between Rs. 2- 5 lacs
Rs. 5 lacs – Rs.10 lacs Rs. 2 lac + 25% of the project cost between Rs. 5 -10 lacs
Rs.10-15 lacs Rs. 3.25 lacs
  • Interest subsidy

Where the rate of interest chargeable by the Banks on loans is higher than the rates prescribed in the Scheme, interest subsidy to the extent of  the difference will be given to the Banks by the respective State Channelizing Agencies (SCAs).  SCAs are required to pay this amount to Banks on monthly basis so that there is no case of charging of compound interest by Banks on the interest subsidy portion.   

  • Operation of Subsidy amount by the Bank
  1. Subsidy will be back ended.
  2. Banks/Lending agencies would disburse the full project cost including subsidy to the beneficiaries as loan.
  3. The subsidy admissible to the beneficiaries under SRMS should be kept in the Subsidy Reserve Fund Account beneficiary-wise, instead of in term deposit in the name of the beneficiary. Banks should apply no interest on the Subsidy Reserve Fund account.  In view of this, for the purpose of charging interest on the loan, the subsidy amount should be excluded.
  4. The repayment schedule of the loan would be drawn in such a way that the subsidy kept under Subsidy Reserve Fund Account would be sufficient for adjustment towards loan repayment equivalent to capital subsidy amount.
  5. Banks/Lending agencies would issue loan passbooks to beneficiaries.
  • Training

Training is provided to the beneficiaries for acquiring new skills and entrepreneurship capabilities.  Training can be provided by Govt. agencies/Institutes as well as by reputed specialized training agencies.  Training is provided in selected industries/business activities which facilitates gainful employment of the trainees.

Beneficiaries would be provided training for courses upto two years with stipend @ Rs. 3000 per month.  The training will be given as per the level of education and aptitude of the beneficiary.