THE PRESENT CHAPTER CONSISTS OF TWO PARTS (1) Banking, and (2) Trade and Commerce. In the first part is described the various financial institutions that cater to the credit requirements of the district economy. They include such units as the money-lender, the joint-stock banks, the co-operative societies, the Life Insurance Corporation, the Small Savings Organisation and last but not the least, the joint stock companies. Of these the money-lender is the earliest known institution which played an important part in the credit supply to the people who were mostly cultivators. Although he served an important economic function of capital formation and credit purveyance, the money-lender with the sole monopoly he commanded in the financial field, would have turned out to be the most objectionable anti-social element with his traditional mal-practices, had not the Government put a legal restriction on him in the form of the Money-lenders Act of 1946. Another important event that virtually undermined the moneylender's influence was the gradual rise of the modern joint-stock banks since the thirties. After World War II and especially after Independence the latter have considerably expanded their scope of activities which include a liberal supply of credit not only to the furtherance of trade and industry but also to the development of agriculture which is a priority of the Planning Programme. The development of agriculture is, however, mainly limited to the cooperative movement that has covered almost all the district and spread over its every nook and corner. Primarily a credit movement, the co-operative movement has become a watch-word for every economic activity especially of the rural world, thanks to the necessary incentive supplied by the State Government from time to time for furthering its growth. Besides purveying credit to the economy, these institutions also collect savings of the people in the form of premia and invest them in interest-yielding securities. The insurance and the joint-stock companies need a specific mention in this context.

Behind the growth of all these institutions one cannot fail to observe the part played by the State. The Government helps the growth of the financial institutions by engaging itself in various economic activities such as the collection of small savings, the distribution of tagai loans to the needy agriculturists, propagation of insurance business and floating of loans and raising funds from various sources. An account of these manifold State activities in the district has also been elaborately discussed in the first part of this chapter.

The financial set-up in the district has got significant hearings on the trade and commerce activities in the district. With increased circulation of money, there has been a greater movement of goods and commodities. Development of transport and communications have helped the process. The latter has, expanded the trade from the narrow confinements of the village bazars to the big markets of the taluka towns. Regulation of markets of the essential commodities by the State always protected the agriculturists at whose cost the trade otherwise would have grown. The state trading, too, has worked in the same direction, viz., safeguarding the consumers interests through fair-price shops and controlled prices. The second part gives a detailed account of all these activities.