IMPHAL, Feb 16 � Indian Red Cross Society (IRCS), Manipur branch has announced to grant an interest-free loan to the tune of Rs 10,000 to the widows whose husbands were killed in the ongoing armed conflict in the State.
Addressing media persons on Friday at Manipur Press Club here, Red Cross Society Manipur branch president Y Mohen said that the move is aimed at providing an economic impetus to the financially backward widows. It can also help address livelihood issues of the widows who face many struggles after the death of their spouses.
For the interest-free loan, anti-AFSPA crusader Irom Chanu Sharmila has made a contribution of Rs 3 lakh and Rs 1 lakh each have been contributed by one S Ongbi Premi, wife of late Krishnadas of Keishampat and Manipur branch of Red Cross Society, he said. He also informed that the loan amount would be recovered without interest, from the widows, on a monthly instalment of Rs 500.
Any member of women-led organisation formed by widows whose husbands have lost their lives in the ongoing armed conflict can avail the loan. Those widows who are not a part of any organisation can also enrol for their membership to �Manipur Conflict Widows Organisation� to avail the loan.
He further informed that on February 20, the first batch of loans will be given to 50 widows, in which 25 widows are from �Extra-Judicial Execution Victims Families Association� and another 25 from �Manipur Conflict Widows Organisation�.
Mohen said another such project that would help widows of conflict is also in the pipeline. The Indian Red Cross Society has approved a proposal sent by Manipur branch that would provide livelihood support to the conflict widows.