A Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) was signed between the Indian Army and State Bank of India (SBI) on the Defence Salary Package on 23 Feb 2015. The signing in ceremony was chaired by the Adjutant General, Lt Gen Rakesh Sharma and was attended by top dignitaries of SBI Bank, headed by Dr Vaidyan MG, Dy MD (Retail Strategy).
The first MoU between SBI and the Indian Army was signed in 2011 and was valid for a period of three years. The revised MoU is tailor-made to suit the requirements of serving soldiers, pensioners and families. A number of additional facilities have been incorporated in the revised MoU after concerted efforts spanning over a year.
The basic features of the MoU include a number of free / concessional services like free drafts, free cheque books, free funds transfers to any bank in India through RTGS / NEFT, free ATM cards etc. The provision also includes the Nepal Express Remittance Scheme which enables instant fund transfers to Nepal for the benefit of the Nepali Domicile Gorkha Soldiers serving in the Indian Army.
Additional improved features are linking of the Personal Accident Insurance (PAI) to the Savings account instead of the debit card, enhancement of the PAI amounts, enhancement of the exemption percentage of margin money for house and car loans and waiving off of the processing charges on the loans. The revised MoU will benefit almost 19.5 lakh pensioners and 10 lakh serving personnel who hold Pay or Pension accounts with SBI and also provide them an opportunity to access modern banking facilities.