In ancient times, transgender individuals faced discrimination, but education has played a crucial role in fostering understanding and promoting inclusivity. Recognizing the need for equal opportunities for transgender citizens, the Central Government of India has introduced the Smile Scheme 2023. This initiative aims to create a supportive and empowering environment for transgender individuals, ensuring their right to a fulfilling life.
SMILE Yojana 2023
The Smile Scheme 2023, launched by the Central Government, is a significant initiative designed to ensure that transgender citizens in the country have the same rights and opportunities as other members of society. The Department of Social Justice and Empowerment, under DOSJE, has introduced this scheme with the full name “Support for Marginalized Individuals for Livelihood and Enterprise – SMILE.”
The central objective is to eradicate societal discrimination against the transgender community. The government envisions providing equal opportunities in education, health, jobs, and employment to transgender citizens.
Key Features of Smile Scheme 2023
Education Opportunities: The Smile Scheme aims to provide primary, secondary, and higher education opportunities for transgender children. Skill training programs will also be introduced to enhance their employability.
Self-Employment Support: Transgender individuals will have access to various loan schemes and resources to establish self-employment ventures. The scheme aims to promote economic independence.
Inclusion in Social Environment: The Smile Scheme 2023 strives to integrate transgender children into society, providing them with equal opportunities and separate reservations when necessary.
Budget and Duration: The scheme is set to benefit over six lakh citizens from 2023 to 2026. The Central Government has allocated a budget of Rs 365 crore for Smile Yojana 2023 during the 2032 budget session.
Health Insurance Coverage: Transgender citizens included in the scheme will be eligible for benefits under the Ayushman Bharat scheme. The government will provide health insurance coverage, including hormone therapy, under Ayushman Bharat.
Eligibility Criteria for SMILE Scheme
To be eligible to apply for the Smile Scheme 2023, individuals must meet the following criteria:
The citizens applying must be natives of India.
Only transgender individuals who are adults will be included in the scheme.
Applicants must possess an Aadhaar card.
A residence certificate of the state where the application is being submitted is mandatory.
Documentation related to the date of birth is required.
Documents Required for Smile Scheme
Applicants need to arrange the following documents for Smile Yojana 2023:
Copy of Aadhar card
Copy of State Domicile Certificate
Income certificate for a single-family
10-digit active mobile number
Email address for correspondence
Photocopy of ration card (if any)
Passport size photo of the applicant
Photocopy of PAN card (if any)
Bank account number for receiving grants
Photocopy of the bank account passbook (if any)
Schemes Covered under SMILE Scheme
The Smile Scheme 2023 encompasses two primary schemes:
Insurance Scheme: Transgender individuals will be covered under the Pradhan Mantri Ayushman Insurance Scheme, providing them with an insurance cover of up to ₹500,000.
Scholarship Scheme: Transgender children will have equal opportunities in education through various scholarship schemes, including pre-matric and post-matric scholarships.
How to Apply for Smile Scheme 2023
The official website for submitting online applications is yet to be launched. The Department of Social Justice and Human Empowerment is expected to release the registration form through the official website transgender.dosje.gov.in. Once the application forms are available, eligible individuals can submit them online. The official website will serve as the platform for accessing application forms and scheme-related information.
In conclusion, the Smile Scheme 2023 is a commendable initiative by the Central Government to empower and uplift the transgender community, providing them with the means to lead fulfilling lives and contribute to society.