Education is central to the human resources development and empowerment in any country. National and State level policies are framed to ensure that this basic need of the population is met through appropriate public and private sector initiatives. While government endeavour to provide primary education to all on a universal basis, public funding of higher education is not considered feasible. Cost of education has been going up in recent times and since the student has to bear most of the cost, there is a clear case for institutional funding in this area. This model education loan scheme is an attempt to bring out a viable and sustainable bank loan scheme to meet the aspirations of our society.
Knowledge and information would be the driving force for economic growth in the coming years. The current rate of economic growth of the country demands technically and professionally trained man power in large numbers. In this backdrop, loans for education is seen as investments for economic development and prosperity. The model Education Loan Scheme was developed by the Indian Banks’ Association to help meritorious students pursue higher education in technical and professional courses. As the focus is on development of human capital, repayment of the loan is expected to come from future earnings of the student after completion of education. Hence the assessment of the loan will be based on employability and earning potential of the student upon completion of the course and not the parental income/family wealth.
Based on recommendations made by a Study Group, IBA had prepared a Model Educational Loan Scheme in the year 2001 which was advised to banks for implementation by Reserve Bank of India vide circular No.RPCD.PLNFS.BC.NO.83/06.12.05/2000-01 dated April 28, 2001 along with certain modifications suggested by the Government of India. In line with the announcement made by the Hon'ble Finance Minister in his Budget Speech for the year 2004-05, IBA had communicated certain changes in the security norms applicable to education loans with limits above ₹ 4 lakhs and up to ₹ 7.5 lakhs. The scheme was further modified in the year 2007-08 based on experience gained in the operation of the scheme over the years.
With increased public awareness about the benefits of the education loan scheme, bank branches are receiving more and more applications for loans every year. This has also resulted in cases of customer grievances due to misinterpretation of the provisions of the scheme. This review exercise has been taken up to make the scheme more transparent and minimize scope for multiple interpretations leading to disputes.
The Educational Loan Scheme outlined below aims at providing financial support from the banking system to meritorious students for pursuing higher education in India and abroad. The main emphasis is that a meritorious student, though poor, is provided with an opportunity to pursue education with the financial support from the banking system with affordable terms and conditions.
The scheme detailed below could be adopted by all member banks of the Association or other banks and financial institutions as may be advised by the Reserve Bank of India. The scheme provides broad guidelines to the banks for operationalising the educational loan scheme and the implementing bank will have the discretion to make changes as deemed fit.
The scheme details are as under:
Need based finance to meet the expenses worked out as per para 4.3 above will be considered taking in to account margins as per para 6 subject to the following ceilings:
Studies in India - Maximum upto ₹ 10 lakhs.
Studies Abroad - Maximum upto ₹ 20 lakhs.
Note: The ceilings fixed for studies in India and Abroad correspond to the limits fixed by the RBI for treatment as priority sector lending. Banks may consider higher quantum of loan on course to course basis (eg: courses in IIMs, ISB etc). It may also be noted that even loans in excess of ₹ 10 lakhs qualify for interest subsidy under Central Sector Interest Subsidy Scheme for loans up to ₹ 10 lakhs.
Upto ₹ 4 lakhs - Nil
Above ₹ 4 lakhs Studies in India - 5%
Studies Abroad - 15%
Upto ₹ 4 lakhs - Parents to be joint borrower(s). No security
Above ₹ 4 lakhs and upto ₹ 7.5 lakhs - Besides the parent(s) executing the documents as joint borrower(s) , collateral security in the form of suitable third party guarantee will be taken. The bank may, at its discretion, in exceptional cases, waive third party guarantee if satisfied with the net-worth / means of parent/s who would be executing the document as joint borrower(s).
Above ₹ 7.5 lakhs - Parent(s) to be joint borrower(s) Tangible collateral security of suitable value acceptable to bank, along with the assignment of future income of the student for payment of instalments.
Interest to be charged at rates linked to the Base rate as decided by individual banks
Simple interest to be charged during the study period and up to commencement of repayment.
Note: Servicing of interest during study period and the moratorium period till commencement of repayment is optional for students. Accrued interest will be added to the principal amount borrowed while fixing EMI for repayment.
|Repayment holiday/Moratorium||Course period + 1 year or 6 months after getting job, whichever is earlier.|
If the student is not able to complete the course within the scheduled time, extension of time for completion of course may be permitted for a maximum period of 2 years. If the student is not able to complete the course for reasons beyond his control, sanctioning authority may at his discretion consider such extensions as may be deemed necessary to complete the course. In case the student discontinues the course midway, appropriate repayment schedule will be worked out by the bank in consultation with the student/parent
Note: No prepayment penalty will be levied for prepayment of loan any time during the repayment period.
Banks may, with the consent of the student, arrange for life insurance policy on the students availing Education Loan. Individual Banks may work out the modalities with insurance companies.
Banks to contact college / university authorities to obtain progress report on the student at regular intervals in respect of those who have availed loans. In case of studies abroad, bank may obtain the SSN/Unique Identification Number (UIN)/Identity Card and note the same in the bank’s records. The UID number issued by UIDIA may also be captured in bank’s system as and when available. Banks to enter into Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the educational institutions to provide the educational loans to the students. There should be an annual review of the asset quality of educational loans between banks and educational institution.
No processing / upfront charges may be levied on loans sanctioned under the scheme. (Banks may charge processing fee for considering loans for studies abroad. The fee would however, be refunded upon the student taking up the course)
Banks can also issue the capability certificate for students going abroad for higher studies. For this purpose financial and other supporting documents may be obtained from applicant, if required.
(Some of the foreign universities require the students to submit a certificate from their bankers about the sponsors' solvency/ financial capability, with a view to ensure that the sponsors of the students going abroad for higher studies are capable of meeting the expenses till completion of studies.)
Sanction of loan to more than one child from the same family
Existence of an earlier education loan to the brother(s) and/or sister(s) will not affect the eligibility of another meritorious student from the same family obtaining education loan as per this scheme from the bank.
There is no specific restriction with regard to the age of the student to be eligible for education loan. However, if the student was a minor while the parent executed documents for the loan, the bank will obtain a letter of ratification from him/her upon attaining majority.
Top up loans
Banks may consider top up loans to students pursuing further studies within the overall eligibility limit, if such further studies are commenced during the moratorium period of the first loan. The repayment of the loan will commence after the completion of the second course and further moratorium period, as provided under the scheme.
The joint borrower should normally be parent(s)/guardian of the student borrower. In case of a married person, joint borrower can be either spouse or the parent(s)/parents-in-law.
No due certificate will not be insisted upon as a pre-condition for considering education loan. However, banks may obtain a declaration/ an affidavit confirming that no loans are availed from other banks.
Loan applications have to be disposed of in the normal course within a period of 15 days to 1 month, but not exceeding the time norms stipulated for disposing of loan applications under priority sector lending.