Updated: Tue, 19 Nov 2013 16:15:00 GMT | By The Hindu Business Line

Manmohan Singh inaugurates first all-women Bharatiya Mahila Bank

Bank inaugurated in Mumbai; will predominantly serve women though deposits will be taken from men too

Manmohan Singh inaugurates first all-women Bharatiya Mahila Bank (© Reuters)

Mumbai: Prime Minister Manmohan Singh inaugurated the first branch of Bharatiya Mahila Bank today in the iconic Air India building at Nariman Point in Mumbai with an area of 5,000 sq ft space on the ground floor. UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi was also present at the inaugural ceremony. Bhartiya Mahila Bank, an all-women’s bank, will have a network of 25 branches by March 2014, according to Finance Minister P Chidambaram.

The all-women’s bank will predominantly serve women, though deposits will be taken from men too. The credit growth is expected to be at a compounded annual growth rate of 16.5 per cent during the 2010-2030, while the deposit growth is expected to stay at 14.6 per cent for the 20 years period,” Chidamabarm said at the inauguration of the Bhartiya Mahila Bank on the eve of former and India’s first woman Prime Minister Indira Gandhi's birth anniversary.

The all-women’s bank will be initiated with a capital of Rs 1,000 crore and this was first announced in the Budget this year. Usha Ananthasubramanian, who was the Executive Director of Punjab National bank, will be the Chairperson of the bank. According to the Finance Minister, only 28 per cent of the women in India have admitted of have opened a bank account and the per capita credit to women is 80 per cent lower. The all-women’s bank will focus on centres where working women population is significant, including self-help groups. Headquartered in Delhi, Bhartiya Mahila Bank’s seven branches would become operational across the country, including Kolkata, Chennai, Ahemdabad and Guwahati from today. In due course, overseas branches will be opened, Chidambaram said.

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