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Keshav C Das

Financial Inclusion, Microfinance and Livelihood Opportunity
The concept of financial exclusion has been the subject of increasing interest and debate and is characterized as a situation where a proportion of the population have limited access to mainstream financial services. Financial exclusion is a process that prevents poor and disadvantaged social groups from gaining access to the formal financial systems of their countries . In a study conducted by Devlin (2005) stated that that the most consistent and significant influences on financial exclusion are employment status, household income, and housing tenure, closely followed by marital status, age, and level of academic qualification.

Fundamental trends in society are causing this, including the crumbling of the main pillars on which society relies – such as work and family networks - and a reduction in traditional risk sharing through the welfare state. The ageing of the population, the rise of single households and the growth of self employment are accelerating these trends . Access to financial service is hugely important to quality of people’s lives. The current research has identified that many people are unwilling to take responsibility for the transfer of risk that the government wants to see happen. Individual provision isn’t filling the resulting gap. As a result, three tiers in society are emerging: the financially excluded, the mass middle market and the comparatively wealthy. Therefore, promoting access and preventing greater financial exclusion is a big challenge to any contemporary society.

This financial exclusion in the rural area, is not only responsible for pushing the poor people in to more pathetic conditions, but also a system is being made, where the poor people can not avail any credit facility from the institutional sector. As a result the poor people have to depend on the non-institutional credit system, Viz., the private money lender etc. leading the situation to the worst. It also creates an insufficient income status of the poor with inadequate capabilities and inappropriate values.
In fact, to correct this stage of the country, ICICI Bank has been doing a series of good and significant work.
Keshav C Das
Amity University

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