Odisha Government’s Scheme for Improving Banking Penetration

The Odisha state cabinet has approved a scheme aimed at enhancing financial inclusion by establishing banking outlets in 4,373 panchayats lacking banking penetration, utilizing a budget of Rs 500 crore. This initiative will be coordinated with six public sector banks and will involve offering rent-free banking space for five years, along with covering fixed and recurring expenses for the initial three years. The launch of this scheme is a response to the substantial percentage of panchayats without proper banking access.

Additionally, the government introduced the NUA-Odisha scheme, allocating Rs 385 crore to skill one lakh youths annually over the next three years, targeting both traditional and emerging sectors. This program will be rolled out across all 30 districts and will encompass skill acquisition, retraining, and skill enhancement. The scheme will offer various skill development pathways through institutions affiliated with the Skill Development & Technical Education (SD & TE) Department, including ITIs, polytechnics, and other government skilling establishments. Furthermore, educational institutions and clusters tied to sectors like MSME, agriculture, and crafts will also play a pivotal role in delivering these skill-building opportunities.

Why is the Odisha government focusing on banking penetration in rural areas?

The Odisha government recognizes the importance of financial inclusion and aims to address the critical challenge of low banking access in rural regions, particularly among unbanked panchayats.

How will the banking outlets benefit vulnerable groups like senior citizens and differently-abled individuals?

The outlets will provide doorstep banking services to these groups, ensuring timely access to banking services and facilitating the government’s direct benefit transfer process.

What prompted the Odisha government to amend the telecom infrastructure policy?

The amendment aligns the Odisha Mobile Towers and Telegraph Line policy with the Indian Telegraph Right of Way (Amendment) Rules, 2022, to accelerate 5G rollout and enhance telecom services.

How does the NUA-Odisha scheme address the skills gap in traditional sectors?

The scheme focuses on skill development in emerging trades, fostering industry partnerships, and enhancing employability skills to bridge gaps in areas like handicraft, handloom, and agriculture.

What is the strategy for implementing the NUA-Odisha scheme?

The scheme plans to collaborate with established industries, training providers, and industry associations to deliver skill development programs through an incentive-based approach, aiming for economic empowerment.

What infrastructure components are part of the skill development scheme?

The scheme envisions state-of-the-art training centers, well-equipped laboratories, and a robust skilling ecosystem to facilitate effective skill development.



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