Mr Narayanan said the bank aimed at bringing about total village development, right from providing overall healthcare and hygiene for the villagers to empowering the youth with special skills. Training the youths on Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) was a special feature of the project and the bank had planned to implement the project in at least 100 villages across the country, he added.
The ED said thrust would be on enhancing the credit flow for the agriculture sector. Last year the bank had sanctioned about Rs 9,000 crore to the agriculture sector and it had planned to increase it by over 30 per cent during the current fiscal, he added.
He said the bank also attached top priority to the Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) programme. The bank accounted for at least 30 MSME branches in Tamil Nadu, while 200 branches were functioning exclusively to promote MSME programme or were treated as MSME-oriented branches, he added.
In Tamil Nadu, the bank had three branches exclusively dedicated to MSME, one each in Chennai and Thanjavur while the third one was inaugurated at Mannachannallur near here,he said. The bank was working out on the details of the waiver of farm loans scheme announced by the Centre in the budget, as the bank's waiver would be between Rs 1,300 crore and Rs 1,400 crore, he added.
Later addressing the Bank employees after inaugurating the 'Women Entrepreneur Micro Small and Medium Enterprise Division' and the Automated Teller Machine (ATM) at the bank's branch in Manachanallur near here, Mr Narayanan, advised his officials to sanction loans to all eligible women entrepreneurs without delay. The ED urged them to outreach to at least 100 women entrepreneurs during the current financial year.
Based on the bank's Tiruchirapalli Division's progressive performance, the Head Office might be converted into an all-woman branch for ensuring better efficiency towards a specific goal of women empowerment, he added.
The Chief Regional Manager of the bank, Renuka Mohan Rao, said the potential of the branch in financing loans to women entrepreneurs, particularly to those traditionally involved in rice mills was a positive sign.
Ms Rao said the division would explore the possibility of imparting training to women and students by TREC-STEP, Mahalir Thittam, Bharathidasan University's Centre for Women's Studies and the Tiruchi District Tiny and Small Industries Association, among others.
Later, Mr. Narayanan declared open the exhibition of products of Self Help Groups(SHG), as part of the credit-linkage programme organised at Mandurai village near here.
The ED gave away loans and revolving fund to the members of 43 groups to the tune of Rs 34.45 lakh, sanctioned by various branches of the bank.
In his address, Tiruchirapalli District Collector T Soundaiah said the district administration had fixed a credit target of Rs 40 crore to benefit 13,000 groups during the current financial year.