The National Scheduled Castes Finance and Development Corporation (NSFDC) is
a fully owned Government of India Undertaking under the Ministry of Social Justice
and Empowerment. It is managed by a Board of Directors and is registered as a
Section-8 Company (not for profit) under the Companies Act, 2013. NSFDC was
established in February 1989 with the objective of working for the economic
empowerment of persons belonging to Scheduled Castes with an annual family
income up to Rs. 3.00 lakh.
NSFDC's Aajeevika Microfinance Yojana (Lending Policy for NBFC-MFIs) has been
in force since 2015. However, due to stringent security clauses, NSFDC had only
one performing NBFC-MFI partner. To expand its outreach, NSFDC has approved a
pilot MFI lending in Bihar, Jharkhand, and Odisha through five selected MFIs who
are members of Sa-Dhan.
The selection criteria for NBFC-MFIs include a minimum of 5 years of lending
experience, promoters' background in finance and development, membership in Sa-
Dhan (mandatory), minimum MFI5 credit grading, a gross loan portfolio of at least
Rs. 100.00 crore in the last 5 years, presence in the concerned states with SC loan
portfolio, not more than 3% net NPA level, credit plus support after loans, profitability
for at least 3 years out of the last 5 years, presence in aspirational districts
(preferable), and no default in repayment of loans in the last 3 years.
The beneficiaries should be from the Scheduled Caste community, and their annual
family income should be up to Rs. 3.00 lakh. The verification of eligibility criteria is
the responsibility of the NBFC-MFI, although NSFDC has the right to re-verify if
NSFDC provides loans up to Rs. 1,25,000, which is 90% of the project cost for units
costing up to Rs. 1,40,000. The remaining 10% is contributed by the NBFC-MFI
and/or beneficiaries. The fund outflow under the pilot scheme is capped at Rs. 30.00
crore for 5 MFIs, with Rs. 6.00 crore allocated to each MFI.