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Fri25Jul2014

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Micro-Credit : Background & Perspective

By Laxmi Murthy

More than 10,000 micro-lending organizations are today providing loans to 25 million poor people throughout the world, most of them women. The number of these organisations grew dramatically during the 1990s, spurred by the notion of 'self-help' and a faith in the creditworthiness and entrepreneurial potential of the poor. But is the current euphoria over micro-credit missing some fundamental questions? Does micro-credit really reach the poorest? Does it really empower women?

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The bank-SHG model of microfinance in India

By R V Bhavani

As of 2010, the total number of SHGs directly linked to banks stood at 69.53 lakh, with a savings amount of Rs 6,199 crore and loan outstanding of Rs 28,038 crore, according to the recently released ‘Status of Microfinance in India’ report by NABARD

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The challenges of micro-finance in the north-east

By Anjali Deshpande

 

The model adopted in India for disbursing micro-credit to the lower income groups through Self Help Groups (SHGs) will have to be suitably modified if the eight states of the north-east are to be included in financial services, says a recent study

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Are micro-finance institutions exploiting the poor?

By Dr Sudhirendar Sharma

The high interest rates and forced loan recovery practices of micro-finance institutions have been held responsible for the suicide of several farmers in Andhra Pradesh. It is evident that poverty makes good business sense to MFIs, writes Sudhirendar Sharma

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Banking on poor women: Grameen Bank

By Laxmi Murthy

Bangladesh's Grameen Bank is credited with pioneering the micro-credit movement all over the developing world. The Bank brought credit to the poor, women and illiterate, creating a methodology and an institution around the financial needs of the poor

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International Year of Micro-credit, 2005

By Laxmi Murthy

Next year, the UN, governments, civil society and the private sector join hands to raise the profile and build the capacity of the micro-credit and micro-finance sectors

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Women's empowerment, or a debt trap?

By Laxmi Murthy

Micro lending does create a space for women. But it does not change macro structures or provide a transformative framework, says a women's group called Nirantar

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'Micro-credit improves cash flow but doesn't create wealth'

By Dr Sudhirender Sharma

NGOs, banks and corporations have benefited from micro-credit at the cost of the poor, says development analyst Dr Sudhirendar Sharma

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Now they lend money to the moneylender!

District officials and Unicef have collaborated on the Integrated Women's Empowerment Programme in Maharashtra's Yavatmal district. More than 800 women's self-help groups have been set up, helping villagers set up dairy and horticulture cooperatives and several other livelihood projects. With their new-found confidence, women are now taking charge of village education and other public services

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