Annual Scholarship of Rs.6,000 for IX and XII Standards

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Annual Scholarship of Rs.6,000 for IX and XII Standards

A sum of Rs.20,000 crore has been given as loans to about 12.5 lakh students through nationalised banks alone during 2007-08, Union Finance Minister P. Chidambaram said on Sunday.

“Such an achievement has no parallel even globally,” he said, addressing a function organised to inaugurate Oriental Bank of Commerce’s branch at Singampunari in Sivaganga district.

Online loans

Urging those present to ensure their children pursued higher education, he said banks had been instructed to provide up to Rs.4 lakh a student without insisting on guarantees.

At present, six-seven banks were providing education loans online, and all other banks would follow suit this fiscal.

Under a new scheme, one lakh students would be selected across the country for an annual scholarship of Rs.6,000 to help them clear Standards IX and XII, he said.

As for the Rs. 60,000-crore farm loan waiver announced in this year’s Union Budget, Mr. Chidambaram said the measure would be implemented by June 30 and would benefit four crore farmers.

Target for this fiscal

While farm loans stood at Rs.83,000 crore in the first year of the Congress-led United Progressive Alliance regime, the figure jumped to Rs.2,40,000 crore in the last fiscal, and a target of Rs.2,80,000 crore had been set for this fiscal.

Chairman and Managing Director of the bank Alok K. Misra said that by opening a branch at Singampunari, the bank had demonstrated its commitment to have a “pan-Indian presence.”

The bank had 1,327 branches and 78 extension counters, all of which connected by core banking solution, in 23 States and three Union Territories. With more than Rs.100 crore per branch, the bank had the highest business generated among public sector banks.

Collector Pankaj Kumar Bansal said the branch would help farmers, small traders, businessmen and weaker obtain credit.