National Backward Classes Finance & Development Corporation (NBCFDC) is a government undertaking under the ministry of social justice and empowerment. NBCFDC was incorporated in 1992 under Section 25 of the Companies Act 1956 with an objective to promote economic and developmental activities for the benefit of backward classes. The corporation also assists the poorer section of these classes in skill development and self-employment ventures. Excerpts from the talk with its managing director AA Naqvi:
What are the main objectives of the Corporation?
Our main objectives are to promote developmental activities for the benefit of backward classes, to assist individuals or groups from the backward classes by way of loans and advances for economically and financially viable schemes and projects, to promote self-employment and other ventures for their benefit. We also assist upgrade of their technical and entrepreneurial skills for proper and efficient management of production units.
What is your target group?
NBCFDC provides financial assistance to members of the backward classes, as notified by the Centre and state governments from time to time. The persons desiring soft loans should be living below double the poverty line. At present, persons with family income below Rs 40,000 per annum in rural areas, and Rs 55,000 per annum in urban areas are considered to be below double the poverty line.
Can you give us an idea about the amount of funds disbursed by NBCFDC?
As many as 12.21 lakh individuals or groups of individuals have benefited from our schemes. We have disbursed loan amount of Rs 1,717.62 crore till the end of June, 2010. In recognition of NBCFDC’s outstanding services to the poorer section of society, NBCFDC was presented SCOPE “Gold Trophy” on the occasion of Public Sector Day in April this year.
What has been the corporation’s achievement in the area of microfinance?
NBCFDC has stressed on micro-finance to cover a larger number of poor people —particularly women self-help groups (SHGs) for which state channelising agents need to initiate the process of identification of better performing micro-finance institutions and SHGs in their states. Besides other developmental activities, the Corporation is promoting marketing facilities for artisans of the target group by providing opportunities to participate in the country’s leading fairs like India International Trade Fair (IITF), Dilli Haat and Suraj Kund Craft Mela as well as in state-organised exhibitions and fairs.
Do you have any schemes for students?
Yes, special attention is given to cover more students under “Education Loan Scheme”. Under this scheme, financial assistance is provided for pursuing general, professional and technical courses of training at graduate and higher levels. Students who have obtained admission to a course in an institute recognised by AICTE, Medical Council of India etc. as the case may be, are eligible for the loan. Maximum loan limit per student is Rs 1.25 lakh per annum subject to maximum of Rs 5 lakh or actual expenses for the entire course whichever is less at a rate of interest of four per cent.