Odisha government has asked private and public sector banks to deploy business correspondents (BCs) in 2,382 unbanked villages for extending banking facilities.
“A list of 2,382 unbanked villages has been prepared and shared with the banks having operations in the state. They are asked to cover the unbanked villages by deploying business correspondents through banking outlet model,” said an official.
The BCs will be required to go to each village and do the usual business for four hours for five days a week, according to Reserve Bank of India (RBI) guidelines. We expect that these unbanked villages will be covered by September this year, added the official.
A ‘banking outlet’ for a domestic scheduled commercial bank (DSCB), a small finance bank (SFB) and a payment bank (PB) is a fixed-point service delivery unit, manned by either bank staff or its business correspondent, where services of acceptance of deposits, encashment of cheques/cash withdrawal or lending of money are provided for a minimum of four hours per day for at least five days a week.
Unbanked villages are those where either there is no brick & mortar branch or banking services are not available within five kilometres. The state government is also nudging SFBs to go for banking outlets in inaccessible areas by sending BCs.