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KARACHI: Standard Chartered Bank Pakistan Limited (SCBPL) has recently pioneered special Braille Inclusive Banking Forms, for the convenience of visually impaired citizens. Unlike, traditional braille forms where the content is only in braille, Braille Inclusive Banking Forms carry content both in Braille and in English/Urdu text and this inclusivity feature is expected to be a gamechanger.

The Bank has been deploying innovative technologies for world-class financial-services, besides enabling socio-economic growth for the impoverished and the persons-with-disabilities. Launched in collaboration with Pakistan’s Assistive Technology Start-up – Boltay Huroof this initiative will offer valuable facilities for the support and wellbeing of the visually impaired clients.

Continuing with its generous contributions to elevate the banking experience for its clients, the Bank hosted a formal ceremony to commemorate the partnership. This landmark agreement was signed between the co-founder of ‘Boltay Huroof’ Hafiz Sheikh Umar Farooq and the Head of CPBB (SCBPL) Saadya Riaz. During the event, ‘Boltay Huroof’ showcased the new banking forms of Standard Chartered that have been converted with braille inclusive features, other braille supported facilities were also presented, including the first braille animal-book.

Rehan Shaikh, Chief Executive Officer at Standard Chartered Bank, said, “At Standard Chartered, we aim to build a culture of inclusion that is a critical lever to our business success and will enable us to be the best place to work, the best place to bank and contribute to creating prosperous communities. This commitment to Diversity & Inclusion also helps us build a culture of innovation, respect and equality. The partnership with ‘‘Boltay Huroof’ has helped us launch an innovative solution that will make it easier for the visually impaired persons, to open bank-accounts and engage in financial activities, at all branches of the Bank. The State Bank of Pakistan has played a leading role in creating an environment to facilitate financial inclusion and we as a Bank will continue to remove barriers and simplify access to finance for people with disabilities.”

Hafiz Sheikh Umar Farooq, co-founder Boltay Huroof stated, "True inclusion can only become possible when we accommodate every segment of society in our social, educational and economic systems. This initiative towards financial inclusion by Standard Chartered will bring an empowering difference in the lives of visually impaired persons and Boltay Hurrof is privileged to partner with Standard Chartered."

Distinguished guests at the signing ceremony included: Chairman of Naya Pakistan Housing Scheme - Zaigham Rizvi, Chairperson of Special Olympics Pakistan - Ronak Lakhani, Managing Director of Zaamin Builders - Sarwat Nasim Shah and the Co-Founder of Exhibitor TV - Adeeb Ejaz, who formed the management board to oversee this Startup and appreciated SCBPL’s efforts towards broadening Financial-Inclusion.

A visually impaired person, Mr. Saud attended the ceremony and shared real-life stories of his childhood and his interactions with other visually impaired children. Most of these children were deprived of the opportunity to seek education, conduct financial transactions, or engage in socio-economic activities. Saud emphasized the importance of braille inclusive services, and how the special children, their parents, siblings and teachers, can learn to make their lives more comfortable, productive and independent.

Copyright Business Recorder, 2022

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