Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Corporation Bank extends branchless banking facility to dairy farmers

Corporation Bank is stepping up its initiative of branchless banking units so that it can reach out the people living in unbanked areas. Working on this segment bank is gradually increasing the number of such units in rural areas. Besides this bank is extending the facility to dairy farmers and for making payments under the NREG (national employment guarantee) scheme.

Mr B. Sambamurthy, Chairman and Managing Director, in an interview to Business Line told that the number of branchless banking units have crossed 105 by the end of June. At the end of March this number was at 33. “We are planning to set up another 100 branchless banking units by the end of August,” he said.

Under this model the bank will be appointing a business correspondent in an un-banked area. The business correspondent will be given modern biometric smart cards and voice-guided systems to provide secure banking facilities to the rural populace without any barrier on timings.

In the first phase of the implementation of these units, the bank focused on some rural areas in Karnataka. In the future expansion, there is a plan to focus on rural areas in Chittoor and Coimbatore belts in Andhra Pradesh and Tamil Nadu, respectively. A majority of the proposed units will be set up in these areas.

Other than serving the individual villager through these units, the bank is also concentrating on other segments such as dairy farmers and NREG schemes.

Some parts of Andhra Pradesh dairy farmers and NREG beneficiaries are getting payments through Corporation Bank’s branchless banking units.

Mr Sambamurthy informed that the bank is carrying out branchless banking project with the National Dairy Development Board at Chittoor in Andhra Pradesh. Earlier, the dairy farmers, supplying milk to the dairies, were getting payments in cash. But under this project, the payment will directly get credited to the farmer’s account. The farmer can transact his/her account through branchless banking units.

He informed that due to this project there has been increasing demand for recurring deposits among the dairy farmers in Chittoor area. The payments of NREG scheme are also been given through these units.

Earlier, the payments to the beneficiaries, in both the cases, were made in cash.

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