1. Bhubaneswar: Odisha chief minister Naveen Patnaik Wednesday awarded 9 Banks for best performance in priority sector lending, namely Agriculture, Mission Shakti and MSMEs. The chief minister had decided to award these banks and districts in last SLBC meeting. Odisha is the only State in the country that is encouraging Banks with awards for priority sector lending. Speaking on the occasion at a function organised at State Convention Centre, Loka Seva Bhawan, the CM said that all banks together have disbursed credit to the tune of Rs 1.03 lakh crore and achieved more than 93 percent of the Annual Credit Plan for 2021-22 despite the pandemic. We need to continue this momentum, he added.In the farm sector lending, Central Bank of India, Bolangir Branch received the first prize, Axis Bank Rayagada – second prize and Axis Bank Sambalpur received the third prize. Similarly, in lending to small entrepreneurs, Union Bank of India Bolangir got the first prize, Bank of India Jayadev Vihar, Bhubaneswar received second prize and Union Bank of India Talcher received third prize. In lending to Mission Shakti Groups, State Bank of India Kantabanjhi Bolangir got the first prize, SBI Dunguripalli Subarnapur received the second prize and SBI Malkangiri got the third prize. The Chief Minister awarded Rupees Five Lakhs to the banks winning first prize, Rupees Three Lakhs for the second prize and Rupees Two Lakhs for the third prize. Odisha State Cooperative Bank received award for maximum lending in agriculture sector, State Bank of India for maximum lending to MSMEs and Odisha Gramya Bank received award for maximum lending to Mission Shakti Groups. State Bank of India and Indus Ind Bank received award for maximum overall lending to priority sector.

He congratulated the Best Performing Banks and hoped that these champion banks will be exemplary models for other banks.

He further said that for the current financial year, the state has fixed an ambitious Annual Credit Target of Rs 1.34 lakh crore keeping in view the higher demand for credit. He hoped that all the districts and banks should strive hard to achieve their respective annual credit targets. The Banks should also make efforts for better credit linkage in all the three priority sector areas.

He said that the Government accords high priority to safeguarding and protecting the interest of the vulnerable and disadvantaged groups in our State. We need to support Farmers, Mission Shakti Group members and MSMEs, he added.
Focusing on Mission Shakti, the CM said that the bankers need to focus on increasing the average size of loan for Mission Shakti Groups. It has recently been decided to provide credit support to Mission Shakti Groups to the tune of Rs 50 thousand Crore in next five years, he added.

Speaking on the occasion, chief secretary Suresh Chandra Mohapatra said that it is a historic moment as Bankers will be recognised for the first time for their contribution to priority sectors. Farmers, Small Entrepreneurs and Women are the key drivers of our economy, he added.

Finance principal secretary Vishal Dev said that Odisha Priority Sector lending is growing at the compounded annual growth of 18.86 percent.

APC-cum-ACS Agriculture Shri Sanjeev Chopra, Principal Secretary MSME Smt. Ranjana Chopra and Commissioner-cum-Secretary Mission Shakti Smt. Sujata Karthikeyan made a brief presentation on lending patterns of their respective departments.

Among others Executive Director UCO bank also spoke on the occasion.

Director institutional finance gave the vote of thanks.