A plethora of schemes were launched to eradicate the twin problems of poverty and unemployment in India. Almost all schemes flopped without making significant impact. SHG concept seems to hold promise in poverty eradication. Effective functioning of the SHGs and impressive recovery performance lured the banks to this neglected group. In this context, the NGOs played a big role in creating a link between bank and the target group. As a corollary to it, bank linkage model evolved as a core strategy for increasing its outreach to the poorest of the poor who are hitherto bypassed by it. A doctoral research study on women members in SHGs in Kanchipuram district throws light on the status of women, their economic impact, social impact and empowerment created by SHG and the practical problems faced by them. This research also addresses the issue of women empowerment through SHG mechanism. It highlights the challenges encountered by SHG in various dimensions. The findings are expected to help the NGOs and policy makers in fine tuning the schemes and to ensure effective functioning of SHGs.