BHUBANESWAR: State Bank of India (SBI) is going to launch a new wallet which has easier payment options for normal feature phones in the country shortly, SBI Chairperson Arundhati Bhattacharya said here on the sidelines of Make in Odisha Conclave on Thursday.
‘’As of now, we have a wallet called SBI buddy which has been launched in 13 languages. We are working with BSNL to develop a new wallet for feature phones since many people do not use smart phones. This wallet, which is yet to be named, is expected by December 15,’’ she told a media conference.
Apart from the wallet, the SBI is flooded with demands for Point of Sale (PoS) machines. While already over 40,000 machines have been handed over across the country, an order for manufacturing 1.5 lakh more have been placed, she said.
On the scope of investment in Odisha, the SBI chief said the eastern State has great potential and the amount that can be invested here will have an impact on core industries. The policies formulated by the State Government are pro-industries and pro-growth, she said.
‘’Odisha has three ‘M’s - mines, minerals and manpower - while banks are keen to provide the fourth ‘M’ - money in order to ensure that new projects are set up and people get employment. SBI has already given around Rs 53,000 crore as advances in the State,’’ she maintained.
According to Bhattacharya, there is immense potential for growth of agriculture sector in Odisha. People here usually take up mono-crop and paddy is the mostly cultivated crop. The farmers should be encouraged for multi-crops which will double their income and also reduce poverty, she said.
‘’I had a discussion with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik who was asking how to carry forward the business correspondents to ensure that people in remote corners of the State are given uninterrupted banking services. I have requested him to connect us with Odisha Livelihood Mission (OLM) through which self help groups can be roped in to carry out the activities. We intend to do it quite intensively,’’ she said.
On surge in deposits in Jan Dhan accounts, she said in Odisha, there has been 288.4 per cent surge in Jan Dhan deposits in around 46.80 lakh accounts post demonetisation. As many as Rs 878.94 crore has been deposited in the last 21 days.
On future plans of the largest PSU bank, Bhattacharya said the focus is now on the merger of SBI with its associate banks besides the resolution of large stressed assets and complete digitisation of banking operation. ‘’The formalities for the merger are on and it is up to the Government to take the final call,’’ she added.