Thursday, 9 August 2012



The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) set up the Khan Commission in 2004 to look into financial inclusion and the recommendations of the commission were incorporated into the mid-term review of the policy (2005–06). In the report RBI exhorted the banks with a view of achieving greater financial inclusion to make available a basic "no-frills" banking account. In India, financial inclusion first featured in 2005, when it was introduced by K C Chakraborthy, the chairman of Indian Bank. Mangalam Village became the first village in India where all households were provided banking facilities. Norms were relaxed for people intending to open accounts with annual deposits of less than Rs. 50,000. General credit cards (GCCs) were issued to the poor and the disadvantaged with a view to help them access easy credit. In January 2006, the Reserve Bank permitted commercial banks to make use of the services of non-governmental o
rganizations (NGOs/SHGs), micro-finance institutions, and other civil society organizations as intermediaries for providing financial and banking services. These intermediaries could be used as business facilitators or business correspondents by commercial banks. The bank asked the commercial banks in different regions to start a 100% financial inclusion campaign on a pilot basis. As a result of the campaign states or U.T.s like Pondicherry, Himachal Pradesh and Kerala announced 100% financial inclusion in all their districts. Reserve Bank of India’s vision for 2020 is to open nearly 600 million new customers' accounts and service them through a variety of channels by leveraging on IT. However, illiteracy and the low income savings and lack of bank branches in rural areas continue to be a roadblock to financial inclusion in many states and there is inadequate legal and financial structure.

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