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RBI Central Board meets today at Guwahati

The Central Board of Directors of the Reserve Bank of India met today at Guwahati. Dr. D. Subbarao, Governor, Reserve Bank of India chaired the meeting. Directors, Dr. Anil Kakodkar, Shri Kiran Karnik, Prof. M.V. Rajeev Gowda, Shri Y. H. Malegam, Prof. Dipankar Gupta, Dr. Najeeb Jung, Ms. Ela Bhatt, Dr. Indira Rajaraman and Shri Y.C. Deveshwar attended the meeting. Deputy Governors Dr. K.C.Chakrabarty, Shri Anand Sinha, Shri Harun R. Khan and Dr. Urjit R. Patel were also present.

The Board reviewed the current economic situation and global and domestic challenges and policy responses.

The Central Board meets at least once every quarter. Apart from holding meetings in Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata and one in New Delhi after the Union Budget which is addressed by the Finance Minister, the rest of the meetings are held in other state capitals by rotation. The main function of the Central Board of Directors of the Reserve Bank is to provide overall direction to the Reserve Bank™s affairs.

Prior to the Board meeting, on February 6, 2013, the Governor met the Chief Minister of Assam Shri Tarun Gogoi and discussed issues primarily relating to:

  • Greater penetration of banking facility in unbanked villages with a population of over 2000;
  • Credit to the micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector in Assam; and
  • Collection of money by unincorporated bodies and fly-by-night operators from the common man through fraudulent offers.

On February 6, 2013, the Governor and the Deputy Governors also interacted with frontline managers and business correspondents (BCs) of banks from Guwahati and other parts of rural Assam at the Administrative Staff College of Assam (ASCA). Chairmen and Managing Directors of United Commercial Bank (UCO) and Allahabad Bank as well as Chairmen of State Bank of India (SBI) and National Bank for Agriculture and Rural Development (NABARD) were also present at the meeting. The objective of the meeting was to understand experiences and issues faced by frontline managers and business correspondents in deepening financial inclusion in the State. Referring to the interaction, the Governor said that the grassroot level concerns shared by the business correspondents and frontline managers during the discussion was a unique experience for the Reserve Bank of India and would be of immense help in strengthening its financial inclusion efforts.

Later, at the special State Level Bankers Committee (SLBC) meeting also held at Assam State Administrative College (ASCA), the Governor and the Deputy Governors met the state government officials. The State government team was led by Shri Tarun Gogoi, Chief Minister of Assam. Chairmen and Managing Directors, including senior officials of select public sector banks and Chairman, NABARD and its senior officials were also present at this meeting. Major decisions taken in the meeting were:

  • 200 additional rural bank branches to be opened by banks in 2013-14 in the State of Assam and increased efforts for greater penetration of banking facility through business correspondents to facilitate electronic benefit transfer to beneficiaries of government social payments;
  • Credit to micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) sector to be extended by Rs. 3800 crore in 2013-14;
  • Banks to strictly adhere to existing guidelines of not asking for any collateral from MSME borrowers if the loan was covered by Credit Guarantee Fund Trust for Micro and Small Enterprises (CGTMSE) Scheme and for loans up to Rs 10 lakh, collateral free lending is mandatory;
  • NABARD and the State Government to form one lakh joint liability groups (JLGs) during 2013-14 to encourage credit to agriculture and allied activities; and
  • State Government to have a relook into the issue of collecting stamp duty, charging upfront from the banks at present, for filing Bakijai cases (cases pertaining to recovery of outstanding loans).

R.R. Sinha
Deputy General Manager

Press Release : 2012-2013/1332

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