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Rotary Club(Madras) to help HSBC spot schools for easy loans scheme

Our Bureau

Chennai , Nov. 21

THE Rotary Club of Madras will help Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation (HSBC) identify schools eligible for getting cheap loans under a special programme of the bank.

The bank has, in collaboration with Centre for British Teachers (CfBT), UK, launched a programme called `Enabling Quality Improvement Programmes (Equip) in schools. `Equip' is a combination of financial support from HSBC and technical support from CfBT. The programme has been just launched on a pilot basis in Chennai and Hyderabad.

Private schools set up for educating children of low-income families may get loans up to Rs 7.5 lakh, at an interest rate of 9 per cent, Ms Malini Thadani, Senior Vice President — Public Affairs, India Area Management Office, HSBC, said here on Friday.

The monies borrowed could be utilised for purchase of computers, furniture, library books, teaching materials, sports equipment and infrastructure improvement. However, the funds cannot be utilised for administrative purposes or for meeting a school's staffing requirements.

Answering a question, Mr E. Prakash Kuruvilla, Regional Head - Southern India, HSBC, said that the bank expected to disburse around Rs 10 crore in the first year, which could increase to Rs 50 crore in the next few years.

He said that client schools which display a good payment record and adhere to the standards recommended by CfBT, will be eligible for an education grant from the HSBC Education Trust, UK, at the end of the loan tenure.

This itself is a good incentive for prompt payment and adherence to standards, Mr Kuruvilla said.

Mr N.K. Gopinath, President of the 76-year-old Rotary Club of Madras said that nine schools have been identified so far as potential candidates for the loans.

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