Himachal Government Nudges Banks To Push For Credit Inclusion

[lang_en]Shimla:Not satisfied with having become the first state in the country to have achieved cent percent financial inclusion, the government is nudging banks to achieve the target of do a repeat in terms of credit inclusion.

Speaking at a seminar of financial inclusion on Monday, ST Raghuraman, chief general manger NABARD said that there were still about 2.85 lakh households in the state that were not in the credit inclusive list.

However the drive is bearing result as banks opened about 2.15 lakh new account in the last quarter, he revealed.

The apex rural banker also disclosed that about 3.30 lakh Kishan Credit cards had been disbursed in the state and there were as many as 45000 self help groups of which 43,000 were credit linked.

Principal secretary finance Arvind Mehta in his capacity as chairman state level bankers committee exhorted banks to push for making the state all credit inclusive by end of the current financial year.

He said that empowering farmers and rural artisans with credit facilities through the banking system and freeing them from the clutches of village money lenders was the primary objective for making the state all credit inclusive.

Secretary rural development Shrikant Baldi said that by making payments under the national rural employment guarantee scheme thorough cheques was pushing people to open bank accounts and bringing them into the net of financial inclusion.

However district lead bankers from Kangra, Una and Bilaspur were critical that seeking cooperation of other banks in districts as well as sharing data about households that do not have a bank account or a credit account were some of the difficulties being encountered in pushing for credit inclusion

The bankers were also said that technological intervention for rural banking solutions was proving expensive and want NABARD or Reserve Bank of India to assist in sharing costs for introducing biometric banking.[/lang_en]

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