Banks have national responsibility to extend liberal credit to J&K: Rather

RATHER-16JAMMU : The Minister for Finance and Ladakh Affairs, Mr. Ab. Rahim Rather has asked the National Level Financial Institutions operating in the State to extend liberal credit facility keeping in view the State’s limited financial resources besides, numerous problems it was facing. He said it was national responsibility of the Bankers to provide hassle free lending support to the people of the State.
Speaking at the 91st meeting of the State Level Bankers Committee (SLBC) at Jammu today the Finance Minister impressed upon the Financial Institutions to remove the persisting impression that banks in J&K are interested only in deposits least concerned about advances. He asked the Banks to improve Credit Deposit Ratio (CDR) which is yet for below the National Bench Mark adding that there should be no flight of capital from the poor state like J&K.
Chief Secretary, Mr. IqbalKhandey, Chairman J&K Bank, Mushtaq Ahmed, Principal Secretary Planning and Development, Mr. B.R. Sharma, Principal Secretary Finance, Mr. B.B. Vyas, Regional Director RBI, Mr. K.K. Saraf, Chief General Manager NABARD, DR. B.G. Mukhopadhay, Representatives of various National Banking Institutions, Administrative Secretaries and heads of various departments were present in the meeting.
Mr. Rather called for greater accountability among banking Institutions adding that defaulters should be brought to book. He said instructions given at the SLBC meeting should be taken seriously and implemented in latter and spirit.
While hailing J&K Bank, State Bank of India and HDFC Bank for taking some initiatives under Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) agenda, the Minister urged upon them to prepare such CSR plans which would make a more lasting impact on the socio economic conditions of the people, particularly in the remote and in-accessible areas in tune with the directions of Chairman RBI. He also enjoined upon the banks to complete 100% coverage of 10.9 lakh farming families under KCC scheme, adding that the State government has already exempted credits upto Rs. 1.50 lakh per KCC from the levy of stamp duty.
The Minister also sought cooperation of the commercial banks in the implementation of Electronic Benefit Transfer (EBT) Scheme on a fast track basis adding that it is a revolutionary’s concept in e-governance. He called for greater sense of urgency to bring J&K at par with other States of the country in mobilizing of deposits, expansion of credit networks and improving upon other banking parameters.
The Finance Minister appreciated the banks for showing improvement in the share of Agriculture Sector in the total priority sector advances which have improved to 28.68 percent in comparison to the figure of 24.62 per cent as on 31 st March 2013, adding that the share of agriculture.
On the occasion the Chairman of the J&K Bank who is also Convener of the J&K SLBC threw light on the performance of various banking institutions in the State. He said all the initiatives relating to financial inclusion launched by the Central Government are being prioritizes in the J&K State. He said under agriculture sector against the annual target of Rs. 3212.98 crore for 391773 beneficiaries, the banks have disbursed total amount of Rs. 1094.74 crore in favour of 93746 beneficiaries during the 6 months (ending September 2013) registering achievement of 34.07% in financial terms and 24 %in physical terms. Of this the share of J&K bank is to the tune of Rs. 800.88 crore favouring 56614 beneficiaries (constituting 73% of total credit to agriculture in financial and 60%in physical terms.

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