Chandigarh/August 28 (NG News)
Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Thursday urged the bankers to provide loans at low rates of interest to the poor and economically depressed sections of the society to ensure their financial autonomy.
After launching the ‘Prime Minister’s Jan Dhan Yojna’ here at Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan, Badal said that bankers could play a pro-active role in bringing down the existing exorbitant rates of interest on the loans advanced to the poor and underprivileged strata of the society. He underscored the need to provide these loans at nominal rates which would not only ensure the financial empowerment of the poor but also guarantee the recovery of these loans.
Badal said that the very intent and purpose behind the concept of nationalization of banking sector could only be served meaningfully provided majority of economically deprived sections of society were propelled towards financial inclusion.
Hailing the scheme which was the brain child of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to ameliorate the lot of poor and disadvantaged sections, the Chief Minister said that it would certainly prove to be a milestone in transforming their destiny, which were till now leading a life in penury. He announced that Punjab, which was the frontrunner state, would also lead the nation in accomplishing the target of opening saving accounts under the scheme much before the national deadline of January 26, 2015.
The Chief Minister, while highly appreciating the firm commitment and dedication of Modi, said that this scheme would surely act as a catalyst to encompass the majority of country’s populace within the ambit of banking fold. Giving sole credit to Prime Minister for this historic decision, he said that it was unprecedented in the history of Indian polity that a pro-poor initiative of such vast magnitude had been swiftly implemented with strong political will and determination.
Badal further said that this was evident from the fact that the scheme was formally announced by the Prime Minister during his address on Independence Day from the ramparts of Red Fort and today exactly after 13 days it has been launched across the country in true letter and spirit.