Microfinance institutions (MFIs) and non banking financial lenders (NBFCs) are gearing up to resume full operations in the safer areas after the government lifted various restrictions. These non-bank lenders have asked their branches to reach out to the customers in need of loans and boost credit to MSMEs, The Economic Times reported. The government has extended the nationwide lockdown due to coronavirus till May 17.
The report also stated that a few NBFCs with headquarters located in red zones including Mumbai, Pune and Delhi are also seeking permission on special grounds from authorities to allow critical administrative and back-end staff to restart work.
On April 17, the government had for the first time allowed non-banking financial companies (NBFCs), housing finance companies (HFCs) and microfinance institutions (MFIs) to operate with bare minimum staff after coronavirus lockdown began. The cooperative credit societies were also allowed to operate.The NBFCs and MFIs had asked the government to also allow them to operate similar to banks. In the first phase of lockdown, the government only allowed banks to operate.
Meanwhile, the government on Friday announced an extension of nationwide lockdown due to coronavirus crisis for two more weeks beyond May 3. The government also issued new guidelines to regulate different activities in this period, based on the risk profiling of the districts of the country into Red (hotspot), Green and Orange Zones. The guidelines have permitted considerable relaxation in the districts falling in the Green and Orange Zones, the Ministry of Home Affairs said.