Deadline for banks to open accounts in 51 districts for subsidies scheme
By Neelima Shankar
Dec 7, 2012
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The government has set a deadline for the public sector banks till December 15th to open the bank accounts in 51 districts chosen for direct cash transfer of the subsidies scheme.

A top bank official said, "The banks have been given electoral rolls in rural areas and they have to ensure that per family at least one account is opened".

Shortage of business correspondents (BC) is the biggest hurdle which banks are facing in the rural areas currently. The business correspondent model is very necessary for the financial inclusion schemes.

Chairman of a public sector bank said, "Getting BCs is not very difficult, but the rate of attrition is very high due to availability of other better avenues".

The government is pushing the banks to have all the infrastructure ready by December 15 to rollout the scheme. As far as technological infrastructure is concerned, the banks are ready and testings are going on.

Currently, the banks are only focusing on the 51 districts chosen for the first phase of the scheme and looking that the scheme is success.

Mr. K V Kamath, chairman ICICI Bank and Infosys said, "The scheme will change the budgetary process in the country, it will change our deficit process and it will make a huge lot of good as money goes into the hands of people."

"There will definitely be hiccups in the initial days of the implementation of the scheme," he added. He expressed confidence that the banks can make this scheme a success because of the necessary systems and supports.


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