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Rural banking gets real time...

Villagers will now be connected on a real-time basis for financial transactions like their urban counterparts. Public sector lender Central Bank of India, in a tie-up with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), will soon rollout hand-held devices capable of transferring data instantly.

india Updated: Feb 17, 2011 00:56 IST
Sachin Kumar

Villagers will now be connected on a real-time basis for financial transactions like their urban counterparts. Public sector lender Central Bank of India, in a tie-up with Tata Consultancy Services (TCS), will soon rollout hand-held devices capable of transferring data instantly.

“The new device will send the data on a real-time basis,” said Vijayalakshmi R Iyer, executive director, Central Bank of India. “If an amount is debited or credit from a villager’s account, this data will be transferred on a real-time basis, without any time lag.”

At present, there is a time lag of six-eight hours in rural transactions. The business correspondent, who carries the hand-held micro device, collects the money or undertakes other financial activities and uploads the data in the evening on the bank’s server. The time lag leaves room for misuse of funds: the new system will reduce such frauds.

“With villagers connected on a real-time basis, the financial inclusion drive will become more transparent and the monitoring of business correspondents will be possible on a real-time basis,” said Iyer.

The bank has ordered around 2,400 micro devices for the same. It has already tested some of the devices and the results are encouraging, bank officials said.

The bank is targeting around 1,800 villages under its financial inclusion plan by the end of March.