Digital financial inclusion - A distant dream for India?
Recent government policy has broadened its scope toward digital financial inclusion. Despite its growth primarily seen in urban areas, India has achieved second place in the global FinTech adoption Index. As of 2018, nearly 80% of Indians have a bank account as part of Prime Minister Jan Dhan Yojana.
However, 48% of these bank accounts are inactive. Digital financial inclusion is access to inexpensive, secure, and effective financial services for all, through mobile applications, digital payments, virtual accounts, and other such online methods. The key challenge to Digital Financial Inclusion is the presence of a stark digital divide. Despite measures taken by private and public enterprises to increase network connectivity and bring affordable internet access, most rural parts of India have a long way to go.
Benefits of Digital Financial Inclusion
Several communities across the world have benefitted through digital Financial Inclusion measures. Communities that were initially underserved and financially excluded, have now received access to multiple customized financial products and services. World Bank reports suggest that digital platforms can provide large-scale access at lower costs.
Digital payments in India FY 2018-2021, by transaction type - Published by Statista Research Department, Jul 8, 2021
Digital financial inclusion ensures sustainable economic growth by creating opportunities to manage sudden economic shocks, access government benefits at cheaper costs, improve saving and budgeting habits, and consider investment opportunities among all sections of society.
To achieve digital financial inclusion, we must take steps toward creating inclusive infrastructural growth, combat financial illiteracy, and simplify access to formal banking structures. Simultaneously work on bringing awareness and trust, through transparent and clear processes, to provide financial services as well as reduce poverty.
What are we striving to achieve:
Rang De's programs are aimed at digital financial inclusion. Through our (digital) platform changemakers, like you and me, can invest directly into the livelihood of rural farmers and entrepreneurs across the country. For most of our rural communities, this intervention is the first of its kind. Your investment is directly transferred into your investees’ bank accounts. We conduct background and credit checks on our beneficiaries, and select borrowers carefully, so that your investment is valued and repaid.
'Rang De’s loan-related digital processes have been appreciated by many of its Partners for their simplicity and ease of use. They have helped people get over their initial hesitancy in adopting digital means of financial transactions. With recent innovations in providing access to platforms such as UPI through feature phones and via voice calls, we look forward to further bridging the divide in the days ahead.'' - Atul Sharma, Chief Finance Officer, Rang De
Followed by this, we provide our borrowers with a custom-designed financial literacy program. We conduct these sessions both online and offline after understanding our community and their needs.
"For all of us at Rang De, it is important that communities we serve have the "freedom of choice" The freedom to choose, how much they want to borrow, for how long and at what interest rate." This basic freedom of choice is missing for a vast population. Our financial literacy methodology is aimed at creating awareness to help people exercise that choice." - Smita Ram, Co-Founder, and CEO, Rang De
Help us reach out to more farmers, entrepreneurs, and students in remote areas. Invest in credit-starved communities and help them rebuild their livelihood. To know more visit rangde.in or write to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.