Mumbai, 2 January 2014: The Prime Minister, Narendra Modi today called upon banks to create one lakh “Swachhta Entrepreneurs” within a year, to make the “Swachh Bharat” vision a sustainable reality.
He was speaking in Mumbai on the occasion of the dedication of ICICI`s Digital Village to the Nation. The function also marked 60 years of the ICICI group. Narendra Modi complimented the MD and CEO of ICICI Bank, Mrs. Chanda Kochhar for the way she had institutionalized the initiative of Swachh Bharat within her organization. Noting that the experience of the ICICI group over the last sixty years would prove immensely useful to India`s economic development in the years ahead, the Prime Minister urged ICICI Bank to prepare a vision of tangible goals which they would achieve by the time they celebrated the 75th anniversary of ICICI group. As an intermediate target, he also asked the Bank to think of what goals they could achieve by 2022, the 75th anniversary of India`s independence.
The Prime Minister urged ICICI Bank to adopt a social charter of such tangible goals. He said many times one institution takes the lead and others follow, generating momentum towards a good cause.
The Prime Minister spoke of Akodara Village in Gujarat`s Sabarkantha district, chosen by ICICI Bank as a digital village. He said Akodara had a cattle hostel, which had contributed immensely to improving incomes and cleanliness in the village. He said more and more villages across India would adopt this model soon. The Prime Minister said rural development could emerge as a powerhouse of economic development for the country.
Congratulating ICICI Bank and the people of Akodara for creating a cashless economic system. He said banks in India should actually compete for achieving maximum cashless transactions, as this would be the best solution to the problem of black money.
The Prime Minister said people in India had a propensity towards saving, but this was targeted towards gold. The challenge for banks was to assure people that a bank account would ensure easy access to their savings whenever required. He said if banks were able to do so, they could emerge as agents of social transformation.
Earlier, Akodara village of Sabarkantha District in Gujarat was formally dedicated as a digital village by the Prime Minister.
Governor of Maharashtra Vidyasagar Rao, Chief Minister of Maharashtra Devendra Fadnavis, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, and MD & CEO of ICICI Bank Chanda Kochhar were present on the occasion.