Kolkata: The State Bank of India, through its subsidiary SBI Cards & Payments Services Pvt Ltd, will offer credit cards to farmers across the country, a senior company official said on Tuesday.
The project has been initiated on a pilot basis in Gujarat, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, and depending on the success of the pilot run, it will be launched nationally, SBI chairman Rajnish Kumar said. Around 100 applications for such credit cards had already been received, he added.
Unlike the Kisan Credit Card (KCC), the new credit cards for the farmers will have a credit limit with a credit period of 45 days. Currently, under KCC, beneficiaries (farmers) maintain loan accounts with the banks and the lenders offer them debit cards against this account.
Kumar said significantly lower interest penalty will be levied on farmers who default on the 45 day credit period, unlike in case of usual credit cards.
He said the farmers could also use the new credit cards to buy non-agricultural goods. “There will be some limits within that credit card," Kumar said, adding that around 75-80% limit could be for buying agricultural inputs.
Kumar was in Kolkata to launch mobile shopping app “FarmCart" and delivery management app “Dealer bandhu" by Mumbai-based start-up Poorti Agri Services Pvt Ltd, led by N Balasubramanian, former chairman of Small Industries Development Bank of India (SIDBI).
Poorti or Platform for Online Ordering & Rural Transformation of India was officially launched on Tuesday starting with West Bengal as the first state. The initiative will be next introduced to Andhra Pradesh and Telangana.