India’s largest banking group, State
Bank of India (SBI), fresh from its biggest expansion drive in a
single day (it opened 154 branches and 1,540 ATMs on 12 July) says
it will introduce banking services to 50,000 ‘unbanked’ villages by
March 2010.

SBI’s network, which now totals 11,811 units
and 9,502 ATMs, will be further expanded with the launch of 1,000
branches and 10,000 ATMs by the end of the current fiscal year.
SBI’s ambitions to reach out to the unbanked sector represent a
near doubling of its current operations, which extend to around
53,000 villages.