India’s one of the largest banks ICICI has come up with a new initiative to transform our country into Digital India. The bank has been motivated by the success of its experimental program ICICI Digital Village Campaign that created India’s first digital village Akodara in Gujarat’s Sabarkantha district.
By taking this step as its first success, ICICI Bank on Monday promised to convert 100 villages into digital villages in the coming 100 days. The bank is looking to provide free vocational training to 10,000 poor villagers and also provide credit facility for self-employment.
According to the bank authorities, it could be executed under a three-pronged strategy. Making of Digital Villages also includes digitization of transactions and commercial activities, training to villagers and poor people, credit facility to help individuals in the villages.
Speaking about the initiative, ICICI Bank MD and CEO Chandra Kochchar said, “We feel that technology can play a vital role in these days to develop a society. By leveraging technology, we converted Akodara village in Gujarat to Digital Village last year. Its success motivates us to try something new, and now we will plan to turn 100 communities into digital villages in 100 days.”
“We will create a cashless ecosystem at these communities, provide vocational training to 10,000 villagers in first 100 days and also provides them credit facility to build up their businesses,” she said.
Akodara, the village in Sabarkantha district in Gujarat which is located nearly 90 Km from Ahmedabad has converted into a complete digital village in less than 18 months, and it looks unaffected by the Narendra Modi’s latest announcement on notes ban. The people all over India are struggling from cash crisis, but Akodara is the only village to escape from a money crunch, and more transactions in Akodara between Rs 10 and Rs 5,000 had done via SMS.
The same technological initiatives like opening bank accounts using Aadhar-based-e-KYC and making cashless payments to retail stores through an SMS/USSD-based mobile solution will be implemented in ICICI Digital Village Programme
The ICICI Digital Village project is designed to focus on women. To provide self-employment opportunities to villagers, the bank looks to give credit facility.