Ahmedabad: BJP president Amit Shah on Tuesday asked the co-operative sector banks of Gujarat to join the 'Pradhan Mantri Jan Dhan Yojna' and take up a movement to ensure that everyone in the state has a bank account.
Shah was in the city today to inaugurate RuPay ATM and debit card and first ATM centre of Gujarat State Co-Operative Bank (GSC) at its head office in Naranpura area here today.
"When the idea of Jan Dhan Yojna was floated by PM, I learnt from our Finance Minister that 50 percent families in India never had any bank account. I congratulate our PM for introducing such scheme for the benefit of poorest of poor. Within last 3 months, more than 5 crore bank accounts have been opened under this scheme," he said.
"The motto of co-operative movement is to make people self-reliant. I would like to urge GSC and other co-operative banks to join this movement and ensure that every poor, dalit and tribal in the state has his bank account," Shah said.
The GSC Bank is the apex bank of 18 co-operative banks in Gujarat having more than 1,200 branches across the state. While launching the first 'RuPay' ATM and debit card for the bank, Shah said one should not underestimate the capabilities of such banks.
Apart from Gujarat, Shah claimed that co-operative movement is still active in many other states, such as Maharashtra, Karnataka and Rajasthan.
"I know the strength of co-operative movement. This newly launched RuPay card and ATM is just a beginning. Looking at the sheer size and reach of this sector, I am sure that within next 5 years, debit cards issued by co-operative banks will be highest in India," he said.
According to Shah, Modi brought the national banking sector back on its original track of providing service, not just earning profit. He also took a dig at the 'minimum balance' criteria of banks.
"In the past, bank authorities shifted their efforts on how to get 'big ticket' accounts, which gave them more profit in minimum paper work. Then came the concept of minimum balance attached to opening of account," he said.
"Banks have forgotten that one of their key functions is to provide service. Instead, they shifted their focus on how to become a profit making organisation. I congratulate our PM for introducing 'zero balance' bank account concept under the Jan Dhan Yojna," Shah said.