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Abstract

The efforts for financial inclusion need to be designed with a vision beyond just the percentage of the country population with access to a bank account or a no frills account; to focus more on how this can enhance the capability and convenience for the un-banked and under-banked, specifically the small and marginal farmers in this case, to enable greater transparency, accountability, efficiency and convenient access to necessary facilities. The growth of ICT industry and mobile telecom revolution in India has provided immense opportunities for targeting various nodes in an agricultural value chain; and in linking small and marginal farmers. By leveraging on the available technology, payment systems such as mobilebased and card-based can extend the convenience and will revolutionize the transaction environment with the agricultural value chain. These new payment mechanisms aim not only at introducing cashless payments but also at greater financial inclusion by being more affordable and easily available to everyone. In the age of collaboration and partnerships, the triad of mobile operators, technology developers and banks have begun to work closely in what is emerging as a revolution. The Government will play an important role in facilitating this partnership and scaling successful models as part of its policy to enable greater financial inclusion, with a focus on the small and marginal farmers.

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