FM announces amalgamation of banks to achieve higher economic growth

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New Delhi: Finance & Corporate Affairs Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Friday, 30 August 2019, announced the Union Government’s decision to consolidate Public Sector Banks (PSBs) for strong national resence & global reach.

The banks being amalgamated together handle 82% of PSB business and 56% of Commercial bank business. These are being brought together to strengthen
national presence and regional focus

Through a presentation, the Finance Minister underscored strong banks are imperative for achieving the target of $5 trillion economy in 2024 from $ 2.6 trillion in 2017.

The Minister said that strong foundation is being laid through Financial Sector Reforms, which is an ongoing endeavour. and the task at hand now is “Building NextGen Banks – Unlocking potential through Consolidation”

Touching upon the objective, the Finance Minister said that big banks with enhanced capacity will increase credit; It will also ensure our bankshave a strong national presence and global reach; there are operational efficiency gains that would reduce cost of lending and enhance risk appetite.

Focusing thrust on NextGen technology for banking, the Minister said that the Big banks will ensure wider offerings with enhanced customisation and better ability to raise resources from markets.

Snapshot of Consolidations

PNB + Oriental Bank of Commerce + United Bank
Same CBS platform (Finacle) in all three banks to enable quick realisation of gains

2nd largest PSB with business of Rs. 17.95 lakh crore (~1.5 times PNB)
2nd largest branch network in India, with 11,437 branches

High CASA and lending capacity combined in consolidated bank
Large cost reduction potential due to network overlaps
Cost saving and income opportunities for JVs and subsidiaries

Canara Bank + Syndicate Bank
Same CBS platform (iFlex) in both banks to enable quick realisation of gains

4th largest PSB with business of Rs 15.20 lakh crore (~1.5 times Canara Bank)
3rd largest branch network in India, with 10,342 branches

Large cost reduction potential due to network overlaps
Similar culture to enable smooth consolidation
Cost saving and income opportunities for JVs and subsidiaries

Union Bank + Andhra Bank + Corporation Bank
Same CBS platform (Finacle) in all three banks to enable quick realisation of gains

5th largest PSB with business of ₹ 14.59 lakh crore (~2 times Union Bank of India)
4th largest branch network in India, with 9,609 branches

Business to become twice to 4½ times existing bank business
Large cost reduction potential due to network overlaps

Indian Bank + Allahabad Bank
Same CBS platform (BaNCS) in both banks to enable quick realisation of gains

7th largest PSB with business of ₹ 8.08 lakh crore (~1.9 times Indian Bank)
Nationwide presence with strong networks in the South, North and East

Doubling of business size
Major scaling up of reach due to complementary networks
High CASA and lending capacity in consolidated bank

Jabalpur High Court admits petition against reconstitution of State Wildlife Board

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Madhya Pradesh High Court on Friday, 30 August 2019,  admitted a petition by senior journalist and eminent conservationist Lalit Shastri challenging the reconstitution of the State Wildlife Board on the grounds that it is vitiated by law and is against the mandatory provision of Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972.

Since a petition on similar grounds (WP 17127/2019) by social activist Ajay Dube  has been admitted by the Jabalpur High Court on August 26; notice has been served to the State Government and other respondents in this matter; and they have been given three weeks’ time to respond; the Single Judge Bench of Justice Subodh Abhyankar, when the petition by Shastri came up on Friday, ordered that it be linked with WP 17127/2019.

Senior Advocate Praveen Kumar Pandey presented the case on behalf of the petitioner in Jabalpur High Court on Friday.

Lalit Shastri

Through his petition, Shastri has called in question the legality, validity and propriety of the State Government’s gazette notification of 3 August 2019 for the  reconstitution of the State Wild Life Board under section 6  of the Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972. Section 6 (1) (e) of this Act, introduced with the Wild Life (Protection) Amendment Act, 2002, which came into force in 2003 and substitutes Section 6 (1) (h) of the Principal Act clearly states that “ten persons to be nominated by the State from among eminent conservationists, ecologists and environmentalist  including at least two representatives of Scheduled Tribes”, but in the gazette notification issued for reconstituting the Board, three persons are shown as having only ‘special interest in wildlife’ and they are not eminent conservationists, ecologists and environmentalists. Two members of  Scheduled Tribes also have not been nominated as required under the provision of Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972.  

The petition by Shastri points to a government letter dated  8.7.2019. Through this letter, nine persons had been jointly informed that they were being nominated to the State Wildlife Board. 

This letter was also addressed to the petitioner, who is an eminent conservationist, wildlife expert, birder and wildlife filmmaker of international repute.  In the gazette notification that was issued on 3 August 2019, some of these nine persons were replaced by those having only “special interest in wildlife”. This was done merely on grounds of political obligation,  bias, partial reasons by adopting illegal and arbitrary manner, Shastri has alleged and demanded a “speaking order” from the Government in this regard. 

The entire proceeding leading to the gazette notification for reconstituting the Wildlife Board, according to the petitioner, is vitiated by law against the mandatory provision of Wild Life (Protection) Act, 1972, as amended by the Wild Life (Protection) Amendment Act, 2002 (of 2003).

For more than two decades, Shastri has played an active role as a conservationist. He is founder President of CREW ( Crusade for Revival of Environment and Wildlife) a not-for-profit organisation.

Nripendra Misra steps down as Principal Secretary to PM

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New Delhi: Nripendra Misra, Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister has expressed his intention to be relieved of his assignment. The Prime Minister has requested him to continue for two weeks. Further, the Prime Minister has also appointed P.K. Sinha, IAS (Retd.) UP:77, as Officer on Special Duty in the PMO.

In a statement, Nripendra Misra said:

“It has been a privilege to serve the country under Hon’ble Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi Ji. I am deeply grateful to him for this opportunity and the complete confidence he has place in me.

I have enjoyed working committing my every hour and thought for more than five years, towards this satisfying journey. It is now time for me to move on, even as I remain devoted to public causes and national interests. I thank all colleagues, within and outside the Government, friends and my family for this support. I wish Shri Narendra Modi Ji, our Prime Minister, success as he leads our country into a bright future.”

Golf: Rookie Karan Pratap Singh claims his maiden title in a dramatic finish

Harpal Singh Bedi

Karan Pratap Singh – The Winner

Gurugram:  In a dramatic finish, nineteen-year-old rookie Karan Pratap Singh  sank an eagle on the last hole of the final round to claim  his maiden professional title  at the TATA Steel PGTI Feeder Tour  at Golden Greens Golf Club  here on Thursday.

Local lad Shivendra Singh Sisodia (71-67-71) finished second at his home course with a total of seven-under-209.

Gurugram-based Karan (71-68-68), who plays at the DLF Golf & Country Club, delivered a second consecutive four-under-68 during round three on Thursday to claim a well-deserved two-shot victory at nine-under-207 at the Rs. 8 lakh event.

 Interestingly, rookies have now won the last two tournaments on the TATA Steel PGTI Feeder Tour. Last week, another rookie Yuvraj Singh Sandhu had triumphed in Karnal.

 Karan , who was placed second , one shot behind leader Shivendra Singh Sisodia on day two, put up a fine display of driving and iron-play on day three to register a memorable come-from-behind win.

 Karan, among India’s leading juniors till the age of 15, caught up with leader Sisodia  when he sank successive birdies on the fifth and sixth. Singh added two more birdies on the ninth and 10th as a result of back-to-back 20-feet conversions to move into a two-shot lead.

 However, it was all square once again between Karan and Shivendra as the former’s short-game seemed to go off the boil when he bogeyed the 11th and 12th. But there was a last twist when the tall and lanky Karan, who finished tied 16th at the PGTI Q School earlier this year, produced his best shot of the tournament on the 18th, a magnificent approach from 240 yards, to set up the decisive four-foot eagle putt which he went on to convert.

 Karan, who had also posted a round of eight-under-62 and a tied seventh finish at the Bengal Open earlier this year, climbed from 25th to fifth place in the TATA Steel PGTI Feeder Tour Order of Merit as a result of his triumph on Thursday. He won a prize purse of Rs. 1,01,720.

“I played solid today having made 15 regulations and 10 fairways. I couldn’t have asked for a better time to pull out my best shot of the tournament, the approach on the 18th. Even the tee shot on the 18th was a tough one but I struck it well.” he said adding “I kept my cool through the day and really held my nerve in the finishing stages. Importantly, I put the disappointment of the two bogeys behind me pretty quickly and instead focused on the next hole.

Sisodia, the overnight leader dropped to second place in round three after a 71 that was punctuated by two birdies and a bogey. He had a forgettable back-nine where he made a bogey on the 10th followed by eight pars and struggled to close the gap with Karan in the dying stages.

Greater Noida’s Arjun Sharma (70) came third at six-under-210. Chandigarh’s Yuvraj Singh Sandhu, the winner last week in Karnal, and Delhi’s Ashok Kumar finished joint fourth at four-under-212.

Yuvraj Sandhu’s tied fourth finish ensured  raised  his season earnings to  Rs. 1,80,760. Digvijay Singh, the other top-60 player and local golfer in the field besides Shivendra Singh Sisodia, also took a share of 13th place.

HSB