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October 26, 2008

Bank of Baroda Agriculture Officers exam

Bank of Baroda (BOB), the sixth largest bank in India had recently advertised for 200 Bank Agriculture Officer Positions. The focus of this blog post is to acquaint with Bank Agriculture Officer exams and how to prepare for it. My previous blog post Bank Agriculture Officers Exam: What is it & how to prepare introduces you to Bank Agriculture Officer exams.

At first, what is Bank of Baroda?
Bank of Baroda is the sixth largest bank in India with total assets in excess of Rs. 1.78 lakh crores and a network of over 2800 branches and offices with 1000+ ATMs. It has significant international presence with a network of 72 offices in 25 countries, six subsidiaries, and four representative offices.

Maharajah of Baroda Sir Sayajirao Gaekwad III founded the bank on July 20, 1908 in the princely state of Baroda, in Gujarat. The bank, along with 13 other major commercial banks of India, was nationalised on 19 July 1969, by the Government of India.

What are Bank Agriculture Officers?
What does a Bank Agriculture Officer do (i.e. job content of a Bank Agriculture Officer)?

The job of a Bank Agriculture Officer is to promote rural lending in general and agriculture lending in particular for various schemes of Government (e.g. Pradhan Mantri Rozgar Yojna, Swaranjyanti Swayrozgar Yojna etc.) and also other schemes of the Bank.

The work of Bank Agriculture Officer includes: to mobilize, process / appraise the loan proposal pertaining to Agriculture & Allied- Agriculture activities and recommend sanction thereof. This requires customer prospecting, customer acquisition, pre loan-sanction visit/field inspection, verification of revenue records, credit appraisal, loan disbursement & post loan sanction follow-up/loan recovery.

For this they need to interact with farmers at grass roots level to spread information about the credit facilities being extended by the bank as well as interact & sensitize the concerned Government officials’ viz. Revenue officials, District Agriculture Officer, Panchayat Secretaries & Village Sarpanches.

Some agricultural bank services offered by BOB can be found here. These may come handy to you in your preparation for the Interview of Bank of Baroda Agriculture Officers exam.

Important dates for Bank of Baroda Agriculture Officers exam:
Online BOB application form submission: 08.10.2008 to 03.11.2008

Last date for receipt of application print out with dd and copies of certificates: 08.11.2008 (Last date is 15.11.2008 for those hailing from Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshdweep, Assam, Meghalaya, Arunachal Pradesh, Mizoram, Manipur, Nagaland, Tripura, Sikkim, Ladakh Division of J & K State, Lahaul and Spiti district and Pangi Sub Division of Chamba District of Himachal Pradesh).

Date of written test: 14.12.2008 (Sunday)

Vacancies: 200 (34: SC, 21:ST, 78: OBC & 67:Others)

Salary for Bank of Baroda Agriculture Officers:
BOB is offering an approximate salary (Pay scales due for revision) at the start of the Scale plus DA, CCA, HRA of Rs. 15,228/- p.m. in metropolitan centres. In addition, accommodation (in lieu of HRA), Conveyance, Medical-Aid, LTC, Retirement benefits etc. are admissible as per the rules of the Bank.

Exam pattern/format of Bank of Baroda Agriculture Officers:
Following is the selection process for the BOB Agriculture Officers exam:

First written test than followed by Interview.

The written test would comprise of Objective Tests on
i) Agricultural Science,
ii) Quantitative Aptitude,
iii) Reasoning,
iv) General Socio-economic & banking Awareness
v) English.
In this written test, SC/ST/PWD candidates would have to score minimum 35% marks and others minimum 40% marks in order to be eligible to be called for the interview.

Approximately 600 to 800 (in the ratio of 1:3/1:4) of those qualifying the BOB written test would be called for interview and from out of them, 200 would be selected, based on the combined marks of Written Test and Interview.

How to apply online for Bank of Baroda Agriculture Officers exam

At first check if you have the following eligibilities for BOB Agriculture Officers exam:

Qualification: (As on 01.10.2008)
Minimum 55% marks (50% FOR SC/ST/PWD/Ex-Servicemen) or equivalent in Graduation in Basic Agricultural Sciences & related subjects viz. Veterinary Science, Horticulture, Animal Husbandry, Dairy Technology, Fisheries and Agriculture Engineering.

Candidates with Post Graduation in Agriculture with subjects as mentioned above or Certification or Post Graduation Diploma in Rural Management / Agri Communications / Agri Business Management will be given preference.

1 - 2 years of relevant experience of Rural / Agri-Business development through lending, selling and marketing of financial products & services in rural market. Experience in Bank / Financial Institution in the relevant field will be preferred.

Age: (As on 01.10.2008) Minimum: 21 Years, Maximum: 30 Years. Upper age limit relaxations as per Govt. rule.

If you have above eligibilities, apply to BOB Agriculture Officers exam online. Yes, BOB accepts only online form application for the BOB Agriculture Officers exam. But before going to apply online for BOB Agriculture Officers exam, you need to have following two things;
i) A valid e-mail id: This would be required for future communications with BOB.
ii) A Demand Draft for the BOB exam application fee. Application fee is Rs. 50/= for SC/ST/PWD candidates and Rs. 250/= for others. The DD should be made in favour of "Bank of Baroda - Recruitment of Agriculture Officers - Project- 2008" payable at “Mumbai”.

After entering the data in the online application form, take print-out of it and send it along with the Demand Draft and other enclosures (like photograph pasted in the given place and signed across, copies of certificates pertaining to age, educational qualifications and experience. Also Caste certificates in the case of SC/ST/OBC candidates and Medical Certificate in case of PWD candidates).

Where to send the BOB Agriculture Officers exam form?
Send it by ORDINARY POST in a closed envelope superscribed as “APPLICATION FOR THE POST OF AGRICULTURE OFFICERS - PROJECT 2008” at the following address: -

Post Box No. 7640, Malad (West) MUMBAI-400 064.

What if you do not receive the call letter for BOB Agriculture Officers exam form?
After sending the form as given above, you should receive your call letter by 06.12.2008.
If you do not receive the call letter by this date, contact the Official at the address for the respective centers (details of which will be released in Bank's website on 4.12.2008 ) between 10th December to 13th December, furnishing your Name, Address, Registration Number, production of counter foil of Demand Draft and a copy of Application Print Out.

How to prepare for BOB Agriculture Officers exam?
You can prepare for the exam using available books & online sample paper for Bank Agriculture Officers exam. However, I find that you should take the online sample paper only as an eye-opener and use the books extensively for your preparation. I could find following resources:

Online Sample Paper for Bank Agriculture Officers exam:
Punjab National Bank Agriculture Officers Exam : It has 50 solved question for the exam held on 04/05/2008.

Also you may go through my previous blog post on “SBI Probationary Officer (PO) exam Solved Question papers, Sample Papers and Exam pattern”, which gives you some more study materials for Bank Officers exam.

Hope above information on Bank Agriculture Officers and also study materials for Bank Agriculture Officers exam helps you in your preparation for the exam. Best wishes!