Brief History of Urban Cooperative Banks in India The term Urban Co-operative Banks (UCBs), though not formally defined, refers to primary cooperative banks located in urban and semi-urban areas. These banks, till 1996, were allowed to lend money only for non-agricultural purposes. This distinction does not hold today. These banks were traditionally centred around communities, localities work place groups. They essentially lent to small borrowers and businesses. Today, their scope of operations has widened considerably.
Co-operative movement is quite well established in India. The first legislation on co-operation was passed in 1904. In 1914 the Maclagen committee envisaged a three tier structure for co-operative banking viz. Primary Agricultural Credit Societies (PACs) at the grass root level, Central Co-operative Banks at the district level and State Co-operative Banks at state level or Apex Level. The first urban co-operative bank in India was formed nearly 100 years back in Baroda.
Co-operative Institutions are engaged in all kinds of activities namely production, processing, marketing, distribution, servicing, and banking in India and have vast and powerful superstructure. Co-operative Banks are important cogs in this structure.
In the beginning of 20th century, availability of credit in India, more particularly in rural areas, was almost absent. Agricultural and related activities were starved of organised, institutional credit. The rural folk had to depend entirely on the money lenders, who lent often at usurious rates of interest.
The co-operative banks arrived in India in the beginning of 20th Century as an official effort to create a new type of institution based on the principles of co-operative organisation and management, suitable for problems peculiar to Indian conditions. These banks were conceived as substitutes for money lenders, to provide timely and adequate short-term and long-term institutional credit at reasonable rates of interest.
In the formative stage Co-operative Banks were Urban Co-operative Societies run on community basis and their lending activities were restricted to meeting the credit requirements of their members. The concept of Urban Co-operative Bank was first spelt out by Mehta Bhansali Committee in 1939 which defined on Urban Co-operative Bank . Provisions of Section 5 (CCV) of Banking Regulation Act, 1949 (as applicable to Co-operative Societies) defined an Urban Co-operative Bank as a Primary Co-operative Bank other than a Primary Co-operative Society were made applicable in 1966.
Co-operative Banks are organised and managed on the principal of co-operation, self-help, and mutual help. They function with the rule of "one member, one vote". function on "no profit, no loss" basis. Co-operative banks, as a principle, do not pursue the goal of profit maximisation. Co-operative bank performs all the main banking functions of deposit mobilisation, supply of credit and provision of remittance facilities.Co-operative Banks provide limited banking products and are functionally specialists in agriculture related products. However, co-operative banks now provide housing loans also.
UCBs provide working capital loans and term loan as well.
The State Co-operative Banks (SCBs), Central Co-operative Banks (CCBs) and Urban Co-operative Banks (UCBs) can normally extend housing loans upto Rs 1 lakh to an individual. The scheduled UCBs, however, can lend upto Rs 3 lakh for housing purposes. The UCBs can provide advances against shares and debentures also.
Co-operative bank do banking business mainly in the agriculture and rural sector. However, UCBs, SCBs, and CCBs operate in semi urban, urban, and metropolitan areas also. The urban and non-agricultural business of these banks has grown over the years. The co-operative banks demonstrate a shift from rural to urban, while the commercial...