The Union Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment, Dr Virendra Kumar has launched the Central Sector scheme titled “SMILE”. SMILE stands for Support for Marginalized Individuals for Livelihood and Enterprise. The new umbrella scheme aims to provide welfare measures to the Transgender community and the people engaged in the act of begging. The scheme will give the necessary legal protection, social security and a promise to a secured life to the targeted group. The Ministry has allocated Rs. 365 crore for the scheme for five years from 2021-22 to 2025-26.
The SMILE scheme comprises two sub-schemes. These are:
‘Central Sector Scheme for Comprehensive Rehabilitation for Welfare of Transgender Persons’.
- Scholarships for Transgender Students: Scholarships for students studying in IX and till post-graduation to enable them to complete their education.
- Skill Development and Livelihood: Skill Development and Livelihood under PM-DAKSH scheme of the Department.
- Composite Medical Health: A comprehensive package in convergence with PM-JAY supporting Gender-Reaffirmation surgeries through selected hospitals.
- Housing in the form of ‘GarimaGreh’: Shelter Homes ‘Garima Greh’ where food, clothing, recreational facilities, skill development opportunities, recreational activities, medical support etc. will be provided.
- Provision of Transgender Protection Cell: Setting up of Transgender Protection in each state to monitor cases of offences and to ensure timely registration, investigation and prosecution of offences.
- E-Services (National Portal & Helpline and Advertisement) and other Welfare Measures.
- ‘Central Sector Scheme for Comprehensive Rehabilitation of engaged in the act of Begging’.
- Survey and identification: Survey and Identification of beneficiaries shall be carried out by the Implementing Agencies.
- Mobilisation: Outreach work will be done to mobilise the persons engaged in begging to avail the services available in the Shelter Homes.
- Rescue/ Shelter Home: The shelter homes will facilitate education for children engaged in the act of Begging and children of persons engaged in the act of Begging.
- Comprehensive resettlement.