Dhanalakshmi Bank identifies `prospective beneficiaries'
Bank plans to work in close tandem with the SHG membersWill help upgrade their skills and provide marketing channels
TIRUPATI: Lending to self-help groups (SHGs) is not an end in itself, but a means to ensure their overall development and further improve their repayment capacity. And banks have started understanding it, of late!
Thrissur-based Dhanalakshmi Bank, one of the leading scheduled banks in the south, is planning to work in close tandem with the SHG members, upgrade their skills, provide marketing channels and ensure a sustained source of livelihood.
Addressing mediapersons here on Monday, V.S.R. Murthy, Executive Director of the bank, announced that top priority would be attached to implementing the scheme in the temple city where the bank had identified a number of artisans as `prospective beneficiaries'.
The replica of `Ananda Nilayam', the sacred canopy over the sanctum sanctorum of Tirumala temple, covered in a glass enclosure and with serial-lamp fittings is sold in hundreds every day to the visiting devotees. "We plan to finance the craftsmen, help them set shop and also establish dealership networks, thus eliminating middlemen. By this, we will not only ensure an additional revenue to the artisans, but a regular flow of income too," Mr. Murthy said. There were 2,000 SHG members attached to the Tirupati branch who could be developed into entrepreneurs, he added.
He recalled how the bank had transformed a small-time fish vendor in coastal Kerala into a full-time entrepreneur. "With a little financial assistance from our bank, he started selling `coloured fish', which are sold as hot cakes even today," he said.
The bank is planning to bring out a 30-minute documentary, produced by a reputed filmmaker. The documentary will be used to explain the well-meaning project among the SHGs in order to make it a success.