Only taking care of their home & Ghar ke kharche was not enough for them. They wanted to do something more. Something big. Something different. Besides keeping an eye on finances of their own houses, these ladies took a step forward to the world of finance. India’s banking sector is home to many women employees but more importantly it’s unique because it promotes all women branches and even an all women’s bank. At these branches women take the lead. These are run, supervised by women.
It’s worth asking the question how these branches truly help women? Do they? Women are perhaps born with management skills, and so women can handle a bank like their own home. Besides empowerment, all women bank branches have a well-managed and customer-friendly-behaviour anytime you go for a visit. Where women like Arundhati Bhattacharya (Chairperson, State Bank of India), Chanda Kochhar (MD and CEO of ICICI Bank), Shikha Sharma (CEO of AXIS Bank) are leading this finance industry from top level, small branches all are also giving priorities to women – both as customers and as employees.
When women get promoted into positions of power, they can act as positive role models for others. Once on the board, women are more likely to hire more women. That signifies the need to bring in equal employment. It inspires other less-literate rural women to come out of the shadow and choose their own path of success. Like Bharatiya Mahila Bank mainly based in New Delhi, country’s first all-women bank chain, will touch 80 branches across the country. India is the third country in the world to have a bank especially for women, after Pakistan and Tanzania.
Like Bharatiya Mahila Bank, opening of Axis Bank’s first all women branch in Patna was a milestone for the organisation. There’s also the all women branch for SBI in Indiranagar, Bangalore. “Women Empowerment is major ingredient for success of any society which is oddly balanced. There are some perceptions and women safety in Bihar, so having a women branch here, is a progressive step towards women empowerment,” said an Axis Bank spokesperson.
All women branch Bank of Baroda in Chandigarh is also consider the bank’s most sought after ones. These banks may also place emphasis on funding for skills developments to help in economic activity. Moreover, the products will be designed in a manner to give a slight concession on loan rates to women without compromising the bank’s rules.
Focuses are set. Those banks shall aim to inspire people with entrepreneurial skills and, in conjunction with NGOs, plans to locally mobilize women to train them in vocations like toy-making or driving tractors or mobile repairs.
One of the other objectives of the banks is to promote asset ownership amongst women customers. Studies have shown that asset ownership amongst women reduces their risk of suffering from domestic violence.
Well, let’s hope for gender equality then. Hoping for a better future.
Picture Credit: Hindu