Chief Secretary, Punjab Mr. Sarvesh Kaushal today called upon the banking sector to brace up their operations to further provide a much needed fillip to the rural economy. Chief Secretary today chaired the 138th meeting of the State Level Bankers’ Committee (Punjab) to review the performance of the banks for the period ended September-2016 which was held at Hotel Mount View, Chandigarh here today. The State Level Bankers' Committee (SLBC) acts as a consultative and coordination body of all financial institutions operating in the State. The committee discusses issues, consider alternative solutions to the various problems in the field of banking development and evolve a consensus for coordinated action by the member institutions.Addressing the Meeting CS said that banking sector would have to be innovative, aggressive while offering facilities to rural clients and should focus on 100% financial inclusion as that would be the first step for the banking sector of India to become global banking giants. He said that Indian Banks have potential to emerge as global banks only if they focus on including rural clients in their banking network. During the review of the performance of the banks, CS expressed satisfaction over the fact that all the member banks have acted aggressively to meet the benchmark set up by the GoI towards financial inclusion and to accelerate the momentum already achieved in Pradhan Mantri Jan-Dhan Yojna (PMJDY), Pradhan Mantri Mudra Yojna (PMMY), Prandhan Mantri Suraksha Bima Yojna (PMSBY) & Stand up India. He said that Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance, GoI has instructed all the banks to undertake a Special Drive on these financial inclusion initiatives from 15th September-2016 to 31st October 2016 with at least 3 events per district and all the banks had achieved the desired target before time.
Executive Director Punjab National Bank Dr. R S Sanghapure stated that , Punjab State has been declared as saturated under the Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna, the flagship programme of Government of India but there is still need to work hard on issuance of remaining Rupay Debit Cards and also on activation of cards. He said that activation of Rupay Debit Cards is necessary to get the insurance claim under the Rupay Cards so he exhorts all the bankers to work in this direction for meeting the targets of financial inclusion. Chief Secretary requested all the banks to provide the village wise list of Jan-Dhan account holders and then DCs shall facilitate in directing the account holders towards the respective bank branches for account activation and also for Aadhaar seeding of the accounts. He also urged the policy makers to have a re-look on the various terms and conditions especially the transactional benchmark of 90 days for the citizens to have a hassle free insurance claim process.
Chief Secretary was informed that out of the total 2336 Bank Mitras which have to be deployed in Punjab, the member banks in the state has appointed 2294 Bank Mitras till date. CS reviewed that only 1686 Bank Mitras have been provided with Micro ATMs in the state of Punjab. He requested that Bankers to provide the Micro ATMs and other gadgets to the Bank Mitras immediately so that they can work efficiently and purposefully. He assured that the Bankers that the state government would extend every possible help to the bankers in providing the access to the banking facilities to the rural population. He said that instructions in this regards have also been issued to all the Deputy Commissioners. He also instructed Chief Engineer PUDA to expedite the various initiatives in coordination with Bankers under Housing for all scheme to provide affordable houses to the citizens.Mr. Kaushal that banks are the extended arms of the society and the work they have been doing with spirit and commitment in implementing the demonetization and other schemes related to up-liftment of the poor strata of the society.Prominent amongst other who were present in the meeting included Mr. D P Reddy, Additional Chief Secretary Finance, Mr. R S Sangapure, ED Punjab National Bank, Mr. Parveen Thind, Director Local Government, Mr. Arshdeep Singh Thind, Director Institutional Finance, Mr. Nirmal Chand, Regional Head RBI, Mr. Kishan Singh, GM NABARD and other regional heads of member Banks and department officials.