In pursuance with the guidelines of RBI, to set up Credit Counselling Centres, our Bank has rolled out its first Credit Counselling Centre at Himatnagar (Dist. Sabarkantha) in Gandhinagar Region on 08.08.2007 . The said center was christened as Dena Mitra.
The Bank through these centres provides counselling services to farmers free of cost. The counseling services include debt counseling to individuals who are indebted to both formal and informal sectors as well.
The centers takes up / promotes financial education / literacy initiatives through Gram Sabhas with the help of Gram Panchayats participation in various functions organised by Govt. /NABARD/ NGO/ Agril.Universities etc., is also ensured. Information is provided to the farmers/ villagers regarding the details of financial support provided by the Banks and various Govt. sponsored schemes. The farmers/ villagers who visited the centers were educated about eligibility of KCC, Minor Irrigation Scheme of Gujarat Green Revolution Company , NHB scheme of horticulture project etc.
Besides farmers, landless laborers, small traders. Artisans small businessman are visiting the centers to know about various Govt. sponsored schemes. They are properly guided and sent to the implementing agencies.
Glimpse of activities undertaken by the said centres :
A Small library has been started at Himatnagar with latest Magazines, Books, Journals on different subjects in vernacular language which are useful to villagers. Moreover, it also provides various pamphlets, leaf lets, folders in respect of our Banks products and services as well as information on relevant topics by State Govt.
A camp at Polytechnic College in Himatnagar was organised wherein around 110 students were provided information about various schemes of the bank as well as the provisions of financial inclusions.
Two farmer borrowers of Prantij branch (Dist. Sabarkantha) had written suicide note on failing to repay the loan amount. Our officer and LDM approached them and guided them properly and finally regularized the accounts and the life of the farmers was saved. The said centers have been visited by more than 1000 farmers/villagers. .
Functions / Activities carried out by Credit Counseling Center
1.to educate people and prevent them from entering the debt trap.
2.to create public awareness about financial planning
3.to help individuals achieve long term goals through investment , asset allocation, risk management and retirement planning.
4.to provide guidance for opening Bank accounts and induce people to save.
5.to offer a viable task-specific, advisory ad hoc intermediary service between the borrower and the bank concerned.
6.to provide the insight to the people to solve current financial problems.
7.to create awareness about the costs of misusing a credit, as it improves financial management and develops realistic spending plans.
8.to advice the distressed people to gain access to the structured financial system, including banking.
9.to help the borrowers to decide upon the quantum of loans they can avail, based on their income profile and stream of cash flows.
10.to provide counseling to the borrowers which typically occurs after a crisis event, when the borrower has already missed one or several payments, so as to prevent default and foreclosures. to provide technical guidance about rural lending
11.to educate rural / urban folk about the benefits of timely repayment of banks loan
to guide the people about the benefits of having the account with the bank i.e financial inclusion
12.to have coordination with various Govt. Depts for solving the problems related to them.
13.to facilitate organization of the training programmes for the rural people in coordination with various agencies for skill up-gradation and use of modern technologies in agriculture and small & micro service enterprises.
14.to guide rural entrepreneurs to establish links with market outlets for better sales realization of their products.
15.to educate the masses on the proper usage & pitfall of debit & credit cards, so as to avoid the wasteful spending