Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) will open 15 special agriculture credit branches for agricultural lending with its officers attempting to reach out to farmers, Chairman and Managing Director of the bank M. Narendra has said.
He told presspersons in Mangalore on Saturday that 10 of these branches were being opened in Karnataka and the rest in Maharashtra by September-end Together, these branches would attempt to give loan of Rs. 500 crore, he said.
The dedicated branches would come up in Udupi, Hassan, Bagalkot, Belgaum and Raichur districts. These branches would have agricultural officers who would go out, talk to farmers, assess their needs for loans and take their applications and process them. The branches would also process and appraise loan proposals of other nearby branches too, he said.
Mr. Narendra said they would target, for example, sugarcane farmers in Belgaum belt and those growing tobacco in areas such as Nippani. He said the bank was extending gold loans to farmers for agricultural purpose at 7 per cent interest per annum and those prompt in repayment got a subsidy of three per cent. Thus, farmers would effectively get loans at 4 per cent per annum on gold.
Mr. Narendra said IOB had launched a “Career Dream” scheme, which offered loans to pay tuition or coaching fees and could be of interest to students and parents in cities such as Mangalore which had many coaching centres.
He said this year, the bank was recruiting 1,500 officers, 500 credit specialists and other experts. He said the bank’s deposit share in the market had increased from 2. 54 per cent to 2.71 per cent as per the recent figures.