Champions of Financial Inclusion

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Fair Finance or Finance Fair!!

The coming of age of rural finance industry with the introduction of BC network in as many or more as 1/3rd of the districts present in India within such a small period of time has changed the perception of stakeholders about the asset holding pattern of rural citizens. This new tool of delivery of finance not only changed the debt holding pattern, but also their asset holding pattern. Men and women now have access to fair financial services promoted by PSU banks. It somewhere tickles a bone when thought that dominance of men in such condition was merely a loss of opportunity of women to travel far to access those services.
The BC network mode of delivery promotes not only products of banks which have RBI sitting on their heads, but also all those who have a financial product where all classes of society can participate. It isn’t hard to imagine that there would be a long line of player in the market enthused about investing money in the “Country Side” now that mode is established and customers are just a BC away. Expecting fair finance in finance fair isn’t unfair after all!! 

Monday, November 1, 2010

Its Transition Time !!

The opening of Indian economy in 1990s’ brought about a new age of reforms. Reforms which is not just led by Government, but reforms in which both public and private participated through mutually complementary and beneficial relationship. During this period it was realized that while the Government controlled vast amount of resources, the technical and technological expertise was more effectively harnessed by the private sector. This led to a transition phase for the government.

Government realized the importance of not only physical, financial and human resources but most importantly the technological support. Technology which would not only help reducing cost and increasing efficiency but also bring in more transparency and controls in the process.

Technology can play a vital role in delivery of essential services to its citizens. This has proved to be a boon both for the beneficiaries as well as a lot of companies, who can leverage their competency in technology to benefit society at large. The primary drivers for this technological wave in the public sector are:
  1. Increased efficiency of the programs.
  2. Reduced fake/fraud recipients.
  3. Avoid forced sharing of the benefits with the end service provider.
  4. Provide employment opportunities to many individuals even in remote parts of the country.
  5. And most importantly, through technology, increase of outreach of various products through  financial institutions to the un(der) banked

However like any system, it is not perfect and suffers from certain lacunas. This makes it extremely important for the government who is driver for the change and companies at large to understand these shortcomings and risks involved and develop a more effective roadmap to reduce any risk to the beneficiaries.

There is a saying that the only thing constant is “CHANGE”. Change is a process that will evolve everything towards a perfect world. And that what shall be after this change and all the changes that come along!!