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Explain the role of micro-credit in meeting the credit requirements of the poor.

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Micro credit refers to credit and other financial services provided to the poor through Self Help Groups (SHGs) and non government organisations. The Self Help Groups are playing a crucial role in meeting the credit requirements of the poor by inculcating saving habits among the rural households. The individual savings of many farmers are pooled together to meet the financial requirements of the needy members of the SHGs. The members of these groups have been linked with the banks. In other words, SHGs enable the economically poor individual to gain strength as part of a group. Also, the financing done through SHGs reduces transaction costs for both the lenders and the borrowers. The National Bank for Agricultural and Rural Development (NABARD) plays a key role in providing credit at special concessional rates. Presently, more than seven lakhs SHGs are operating across different rural areas. SHGs' programmes are becoming popular among the small and marginal borrowers owing to their informal credit delivery mechanism along with minimum legal formalities.

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