Co-Operative Banks in India is created to financing needs of agriculture, retail trade,small industry and self-employed business in urban, semi-urban and rural areas. A distinctive feature of the co-operative credit structure in India is its heterogeneity. The co-operative banking structure is differ from Urban, Rural and states. Urban areas are served by Rural Co-Operative Banks, Rural Areas are served by Rural Co-Operative Banks and State Co-Operative bank serves the whole state. The Co-Operative banking sector is the oldest segment of the Indian Banking System. In recent years Reserve Bank of India and National Agriculture and Rural Development Bank (NABARD) have taken several important steps to improve the Co-Operative Banking system in India.
There are total six types of co-operative banks are working in India and they are -
- Primary Agriculture Credit Societies
- Central Co-Operative Bank
- State Co-Operative Bank
- Primary Co-Operative Agriculture and Rural Development Banks
- State Co-Operative Agriculture and Rural Development Banks
- Urban Co-Operative Banks
As per march 2009 report, In India, there are around 1721 Urban Co-Operative banks and 1119 Rural Co-Operative Banks.