Our channels to deliver solutions to rural India include an extensive network of branches and ATMs, on-field staff and Business Correspondents providing last-mile access in remote areas. These traditional channels are supplemented by customised digital solutions including our state-of-the-art banking application, named Mera iMobile. Our digital channels and solutions help us to extend our reach to the remotest parts of rural India, thereby making banking solutions more accessible as well as more convenient to our rural customers.
We have a vast network of 5,324 branches across the country, as on March 31, 2020. Half of them are in rural and semi-urban areas. 650 of our rural branches are in villages which were previously unbanked. The expansive network of branches and ATMs is supplemented by over 4,000 customer service points (CSPs) that are enabled through the Business Correspondent network.
Our technology solutions for rural India are developed with a focus on enabling ease of access to banking services and also empowering them with relevant information. Our banking application, Mera iMobile, has been designed keeping in mind the banking requirements of people residing in rural and semi-urban areas. Customers as well as non-customers can access this comprehensive, first-of-its-kind and multilingual mobile banking application. Over five lakh people use this application which is available in 12 languages and provides financial and non-financial information like prices of farm products and weather, thus enabling informed decision making among the people.
We have streamlined our processes to empower our teams in the rural areas to increase efficiencies in the delivery of services to rural customers. Our technology team has developed a mobile banking app, ExpressAgri, to enable our employees in rural areas to provide doorstep services and capture and submit loan applications on real-time basis. The banking app also gives indicative eligibility for new loan applications and deviations on product lending norms. This has shortened the turnaround time in responding to the needs of our rural customers, and has also reduced the time and money spent by customers in travelling to a nearby branch or service centre.
The Bank has also partnered with fintech companies that support Aadhaar enabled transactions to widen and deepen the Bank’s services across geographies. These start-ups facilitate cashless and paperless transactions for making payments and account transaction. During the year, three crore Aadhaar enabled transactions aggregating to about ₹9,000 crore were facilitated through these tie-ups.
We are also working towards making our services available across one lakh Common Service Centres (CSCs) spread across states to further extend our reach. CSCs are e-governance centres, set up by a government body, where people can avail various government services including payment of utility bills, banking and access information on land records.