Airtel Payments Bank brings banking services to 12,500 unbanked villages in WB

Kolkata, Nov 18 (UNI) Airtel Payments Bank is rapidly expanding its footprint in West Bengal to take banking services to unbanked villages in remote areas of the state and contribute to financial inclusion in the state. Over 12,500 unbanked villages in the state now have access to formal banking services thanks to Airtel Payments Bank. Majority of the residents of these villages had no bank account or had to travel long distances to reach the nearest bank branch. With Airtel Payments Bank’s neighbourhood banking points in and around these villages, financial services are now available to residents at an arm’s length. Over 2 million customers in these villages now have a savings account with the bank. Through these banking points, customers can also access a range of financial services like Aadhaar Enabled Payments, insurance and government pension schemes. Take the case of Aparna Roy, a resident of District Dakshin Dinajpur, West Bengal. She says “I had a tough time in the withdrawal of Jan Dhan Yojna payout during the lockdown as the Bank in which I had an account was far off from my village, and despite standing in queue for two consecutive days I could not withdraw my money because of technical error. Eventually, I visited the banking point of Airtel Payments Bank in my village where I was able to withdraw my money within two minutes through AEPS. I was so happy with my experience that I have opened a Bharosa savings account. I am glad that there is a Bank in my neighbourhood and I will not have to stand in long queues.”

Airtel Payments Bank is working to build a robust doorstep banking infrastructure to serve the unbanked and underbanked population in West Bengal. The Bank offers convenient digital banking services through a network of over 30,000 neighbourhood banking points spread across West Bengal and plans to expand its footprint by 50% by March 2021. This will be the largest banking network in the state and a large number of these banking points will serve customers in unbanked and underbanked geographies. Ganesh Ananthanarayanan, Chief Operating Officer, Airtel Payments Bank, said, “Airtel Payments Bank is committed to take formal banking services to the deep rural pockets of the country and contribute towards building a financially inclusive society. We are delighted to enable these unbanked villages of West Bengal and provide them with access to neighbourhood banking. The banking services are completely paperless and very simple to access at the retail touchpoints.”