KERALA

SBI launches new housing loan scheme

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM, JUNE 1. The Kerala Circle of the State Bank of India (SBI) has launched a scheme called `Bhavanasree' for extending housing finance to the members of the highly successful women's self-help group initiative in the State, `Kudumbasree'.

In a press release here today, the bank said its Kerala Circle was providing an outlay of Rs. 10 crores for this scheme this year.

It would be first implemented in Kollam district, through community development societies.

Members of `Kudumbasree' groups who availed this housing loan facility would be offered insurance cover through SBI Life.

The bank would also take the initiative in credit linking around 6,000 self-help groups during the current financial year, the press release added.

Further, the bank would be implementing a `rural housing scheme' to help self employed individuals in the villages to build their own houses and work sheds.

The Kerala Circle planned to disburse over Rs. 200 crores to the agriculture sector. Another proposal was to introduce a scheme for financing the traditional systems of healthcare by providing loans to Ayurveda doctors, rejuvenation centres and Ayurveda medical shops. The bank would be opening new branches at Thrippunithura, Pattambi and Karunagapally before the end of June. The plan was to add between 12 and 15 new branches to the bank's network in the State by the end of March 2005, the release said.