In promoting financial inclusion, Kerala has become the first Indian state to achieve financial inclusion when measured by the presence of a banking facility in all of its villages. Having supported the initiative, The Reserve Bank of India, directed the establishment of banking facilities in villages with population of at least 1,000 people. Access to banking facilities includes access to credit and insurance.

Speaking at an event organized by State Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC) in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala, Chief Minister Oommen Chandy announced that Kerala now has a banking facility in all its villages.

Kerala was declared a financially inclusive state in December 2007. At least one member in every household of the state had a bank account.

According to an Economic Times report, The Reserve Bank of India directed that the plan be extended to provide banking facilities in all districts with a population above 1,000. As such, 127 districts were identified and a bank branch or mobile bank or banking councillor appointed there.

But the process was not yet complete as it would require extension of credit and insurance facilities to all those held accounts for the inclusion plan to be fully effective, Lead Bank officials reported to have said.

Palakkad was the first district in the state to achieve total financial inclusion in 2007.