Banks asked to bring 532 Himachal villages in financial inclusion net

Shimla: Bankers under financial exclusion plan have been asked to extend banking services to 532 villages in the state that have a population of over 1000 persons.

Impressing upon banks to bring these villages under the ambit of financial inclusion, chief secretary Rajwant Sandhu at a state level bankers committee meeting said that the central government had formulated a new scheme, National Rural Livelihood Mission (NRLM) for rural development which was expected to be implemented from 2012.

With an credit deployment target of Rs. 7547 crores for 2011-12 Annual Credit Plan (ACP) 2011-12, she said that the highest allocation of Rs. 2479 crores had been made for agriculture.

She added that 12% of plan resources was being allocated to agriculture sector for boosting income of farmers.

The state government had initiated several measures like crop diversification project with assistance of Japan International Corporation Agency, Soil Health Management, Organic Farming by setting up of 3.50 lakh vermin-compost units in the State benefitting 21000 farmers so far.

Farmers of the state were benefited by launching of innovative schemes like ‘Bhed Palak Samridhi Yojna’, ‘Pandit Deen Dyal Kisan Bhagwan Samridhi Yojna’ and Doodh Ganga Venture Capital Scheme’, she added.

In Solan and Sirmaur districts 225 villages had been covered under Pradhanmantri Adarsh Yojna under which a Central assistance of Rs 10 lakhs was being allocated for infrastructural improvement, said Sandhu.

She also urged banks to implement Social Security Pension Payment Distribution to the beneficiaries at their door steps through the Business Correspondents Model (BCs) by March, 2012.

Last year the banks had disbursed R. 6912 crores to 3.02 lacs new units in the state with highest Rs 1641 crore made to the medium and small enterprise.

Executive director UCO Bank, Ajai Kumar, who presided over the meeting, disclosed that there were 1489 bank branches in the state of which 1213 (80%) were in rural areas.

Kumar asked banks to install more ATMs as there were on 471 ATMs in the state which according to 2011 census has a population of more than 6.8 million.

Senior government officials which included Deepak Sanan, Sushil Negi, Ram Subhag Singh, chief general manager NABARD Naresh Gupta, RBI general manager R Gurumurthy and others attended the meeting.

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