Every bank branch to have ATM by March this year: Minister

Every bank branch to have ATM by March this year: Minister

Describing UPA-II government's focus on inclusive growth in the banking sector as a mission, Union Minister of State for Finance Namo Narayan Meena today said every old bank branch should have ATM facility by the end of current fiscal.

Every new bank was now providing ATM facility while opening its branches despite some problem in availability of these machines, Meena said after inaugurating the regional office of Dena Bank here.

Not only on site, but also off site the ATM should be opened at the busy places like colleges, universities, malls, and markets so that people can be connected with banking facilities, Meena said.

Comparing telephony density with banking, the Minister said: "While there are about 90 crore cellular phone users now, 50 per cent of people in the country do not have bank accounts. But ....payment of every penny from the government is being made through banks to beneficiaries".

Financial empowerment, infrastructure development and expansion of banking sector would enable control poverty and knit India, he said adding there were 8500 branches in 1969 when former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi had nationalised the banks.

The number of branches in the country has now gone up to one lakh, he said.

As per UPA-II plans, one out of nine Mahila Bank branches would be opened in Jaipur by March 31, 2014, and if the state government provides a building, Mahila Bank can be opened even in two days, Meena added.

UPA-II's policy is "Gaon ko joriye, gaon mein bank kholiye (knit village, open banks in village), he said.

Speaking on the occasion, Dena Bank CMD Ashwani Kumar said ten new branches would be opened in Rajasthan during 2013-14 and 15 in the next fiscal including 25 per cent in rural areas.

Dena Bank in Rajasthan made a business growth of 20 per cent so far with a business of Rs 2,400 crore in current financial year and aims to reach Rs 3,300 crore in next fiscal.

Kumar said he would hold meetings with management to raise this business to Rs 5,000 crore in the coming years in the state.

As on December 31, 2013, Dena Bank's combined (mixed) business was at Rs 1,65,976 crore. This included Rs 96,081 crore deposits and Rs 69,895 crore advances, he said.

He said Dena Bank had recently opened its branch in London.

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