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The Indian finance ministry has approached the Reserve Bank of India for clearance to set up the country’s first such bank.
“The committee set up to prepare the blueprint for all-women bank has submitted its report to the Finance Minister. We have sought in-principle approval from RBI for all women bank,” financial services secretary Rajiv Takru was quoted by Indian news agency PTI.
The proposed bank will lend mostly to women and women-run businesses, provide support to women Self Help Groups (SHGs) and their livelihood.
Finance minister P Chidambaram had said the bank will be inaugurated in November.The bank mostly manned by women would start with an initial capital of 10 billion rupees ($186 million).
To boost financial inclusion, the bank will predominately employ and lend to women. Men can, however, deposit in the bank.
Chidambaram proposed setting up of the country’s first all-women bank while presenting the Budget on February 28.
Subsequently, in March, the finance minister constituted a committee of bankers and other experts to prepare a blueprint for all-women bank.
A 2012 World Bank study puts the figure of Indian women with a bank account at 26 per cent.