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Editorial

A Bank in the interest of women

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By EMN Updated: Nov 19, 2013 10:23 pm
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[dropcap]I[/dropcap]ndia on Tuesday (Nov. 19) launched the Bhartiya Mahila Bank with a corpus fund of Rs 1000 cr. Seven branches of this bank which will predominantly favor women (men are not debarred from holding accounts here) opened across the country accordingly. The closest for people in the northeast is in Guwahati. The plans are to launch another 25 by March 2014.
But to get to the point of the subject, men in India may well be asking what the fuss is over a bank for women. And why should there even be one? Why can’t women use the existing banking infrastructure to achieve what they want to achieve?The response can be found in the question itself. In a country with a population of over one billion people, the fairer sex comprises almost half of this number. According to the 2011 census the sex ratio in the country according is 940 females to 1000 males.But after more than sixty six years the majority of women are yet to experience economic empowerment. Statistics show that in the existing banks in India, 46% of all accounts are held by men and 26% only by women. Considering that a majority of the population live in villages in rural India a bank account in a Mahila Bank will go a long way in empowering women.
Whether male or female, educated or not, living in a rural or urban set up, we can all recollect the sense of achievement the day we opened a bank account. Add to that the sense of a woman who struggles to make ends meet with or without a supportive partner. She now has a ray of hope to change her situation. The Mahila Bank with an eight all women board members will extend loans to women for group ventures.
According to Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, who inaugurated the first branch in Lucknow via satellite from Mumbai, said the bank will “broaden the social base of development thus forcing equitable growth”.

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By EMN Updated: Nov 19, 2013 10:23:16 pm