All banks must increase lending to promote entrepreneurship: LG Sinha

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Asserting that the banking sector is the backbone of Jammu and Kashmir’s growing economy, Lt Governor Manoj Sinha on Thursday said all the banks must increase lending to promote entrepreneurship in the Union Territory.

He asked public sector banks and other financial institutions to take dedicated measures to ensure government benefits directly reach the people.

“Banking sector is the backbone of J&K’s growing economy and collective efforts should be made to facilitate common man, farmers, industries, self-help groups and young entrepreneurs. Banks need to cooperate and complement the government’s efforts in reaching out to beneficiaries of all flagship schemes,” Sinha said.

Chairing a high-level meeting of public sector banks, administrative departments and other financial institutions here, he said during the ‘Back to Village-4’ and ‘My Town My Pride’ programme, J&K Bank ensured a major share of 90 per cent in extending the financial support to 75,000 youth recently, while other banks had merely 10 per cent contribution.

“This situation needs to change. All the banks must increase lending to promote entrepreneurship amongst youth, women and people from marginalised sections of society,” he said.

The Lt Governor emphasised support and guidance to the farmers in preparing project reports required by the banks through nodal agencies.

He also called for regular meetings at the district level with mission youth and other government departments to understand the requirements of diverse sectors.

The participants at the meeting were informed about the upcoming ‘citizen’s portal for government-sponsored schemes’.

The soon-to-be-launched portal, prepared by J&K Bank, will ensure that all the banks operating in Jammu and Kashmir seamlessly extend all the benefits of government schemes to the eligible beneficiaries, an official spokesman said.

The portal will enable a citizen to apply for government-sponsored schemes online with OTP authentication and check the status of his or her application online.

“It will forward/route the applications from citizens to appropriate departments & teams in an integrated workflow and enable departments and teams to process and forward/route these applications to the concerned financing agencies,” the spokesman said.

He said directions were passed to explore possibilities to integrate all the schemes and other portals on a single platform and make the portal more interactive, multilingual and having a module of grievances redressal mechanism.

The Lt Governor also reviewed the progress achieved to extend the benefits of Kisan Credit Cards to all the eligible farmers.

The banks were instructed to follow the delivery channels of RBI and saturate the distribution of smart cards to the KCC account holders by June, the spokesman said.

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