RBI seeks more info from banking licence applicants

The applicants are required to submit information on tax filings, group companies, etc by next week following which the RBI is likely to complete its internal screening process by November

GN Bureau | October 23, 2013



Inching a step ahead in the screening of applications for banking licences, the reserve bank of India (RBI) has asked the applicants to submit additional information by next week. It has also approached other regulators including the securities and exchange board of India (Sebi), insurance regulatory and development authority (Irda) and pension funds regulatory authority (Pfrda) to confirm if there are any regulatory concerns surrounding any of the applicants and if they hence, meet the "fit and proper" criteria.

According to a report in The Times of India, additional information sought from applicants include their income-tax filings and details of other companies within the group. Three teams have been formed under RBI executive director B Mahapatra to screen the applications. The teams are focusing on separate issues including group holding structure, business strategy, regulatory compliance and financial inclusion. Reportedly, the apex bank may leave out firms that are not capable of making an upfront investment of Rs 500 crore.

Also, the apex bank has written to the finance ministry seeking clarifications on proposals made by the public sector undertakings (PSUs) seeking a banking licence.

The apex bank is likely to complete its internal screening process by next month following which it will hand over the proposals along with its report to the four-member expert committee headed by former RBI governor Bimal Jalan.

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