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History of Banking in India

Without a sound and effective banking system in India it cannot have a healthy economy. The banking system of India should not only be hassle free but it should be able to meet new challenges posed by the technology and any other external and internal factors.

For the past three decades India's banking system has several outstanding achievements to its credit. The most striking is its extensive reach. It is no longer confined to only metropolitans or cosmopolitans in India. In fact, Indian banking system has reached even to the remote corners of the country. This is one of the main reasons of India's growth process.

The government's regular policy for Indian bank since 1969 has paid rich dividends with the nationalisation of 14 major private banks of India.

Not long ago, an account holder had to wait for hours at the bank counters for getting a draft or for withdrawing his own money. Today, he has a choice. Gone are days when the most efficient bank transferred money from one branch to other in two days. Now it is simple as instant messaging or dial a pizza. Money have become the order of the day.

The first bank in India, though conservative, was established in 1786. From 1786 till today, the journey of Indian Banking System can be segregated into three distinct phases. They are as mentioned below:

• Early phase from 1786 to 1969 of Indian Banks

• Nationalisation of Indian Banks and up to 1991 prior to Indian banking sector Reforms.

• New phase of Indian Banking System with the advent of Indian Financial & Banking Sector Reforms after 1991.

To make this write-up more explanatory, I prefix the scenario as Phase I, Phase II and Phase III.

Phase I

The General Bank of India was set up in the year 1786. Next came Bank of Hindustan and Bengal Bank. The East India Company established Bank of Bengal (1809), Bank of Bombay (1840) and Bank of Madras (1843) as independent units and called it Presidency Banks. These three banks were amalgamated in 1920 and Imperial Bank of India was established which started as private shareholders banks, mostly Europeans shareholders.

In 1865 Allahabad Bank was established and first time exclusively by Indians, Punjab National Bank Ltd. was set up in 1894 with headquarters at Lahore. Between 1906 and 1913, Bank of India, Central Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank, Indian Bank, and Bank of Mysore were set up. Reserve Bank of India came in 1935.

During the first phase the growth was very slow and banks also experienced periodic failures between 1913 and 1948. There were approximately 1100 banks, mostly small. To streamline the functioning and activities of commercial banks, the Government of India came up with The Banking Companies Act, 1949 which was later changed to Banking Regulation Act 1949 as per amending Act of 1965 (Act No. 23 of 1965). Reserve Bank of India was vested with extensive powers for the supervision of banking in india as the Central Banking Authority.

During those day’s public has lesser confidence in the banks. As an aftermath deposit mobilisation was slow. Abreast of it the savings bank facility provided by the Postal department was comparatively safer. Moreover, funds were largely given to traders.

Phase II

Government took major steps in this Indian Banking Sector Reform after independence. In 1955, it nationalised Imperial Bank of India with extensive banking facilities on a large scale especially in rural and semi-urban areas. It formed State Bank of india to act as the principal agent of RBI and to handle banking transactions of the Union and State Governments all over the country.

Seven banks forming subsidiary of State Bank of India was nationalised in 1960 on 19th July, 1969, major process of nationalisation was carried out. It was the effort of the then Prime Minister of India, Mrs. Indira Gandhi. 14 major commercial banks in the country was nationalised.

Second phase of nationalisation Indian Banking Sector Reform was carried out in 1980 with seven more banks. This step brought 80% of the banking segment in India under Government ownership.

The following are the steps taken by the Government of India to Regulate Banking Institutions in the Country:

• 1949 : Enactment of Banking Regulation Act.

• 1955 : Nationalisation of State Bank of India.

• 1959 : Nationalisation of SBI subsidiaries.

• 1961 : Insurance cover extended to deposits.

• 1969 : Nationalisation of 14 major banks.

• 1971 : Creation of credit guarantee corporation.

• 1975 : Creation of regional rural banks.

• 1980 : Nationalisation of seven banks with deposits over 200 core.

After the nationalisation of banks, the branches of the public sector bank India rose to approximately 800% in deposits and advances took a huge jump by 11,000%.

Banking in the sunshine of Government ownership gave the public implicit faith and immense confidence about the sustainability of these institutions.

Phase III

This phase has introduced many more products and facilities in the banking sector in its reforms measure. In 1991, under the chairmanship of M Narasimham, a committee was set up by his name which worked for the liberalisation of banking practices.

The country is flooded with foreign banks and their ATM stations. Efforts are being put to give a satisfactory service to customers. Phone banking and net banking is introduced. The entire system became more convenient and swift. Time is given more importance than money.

The financial system of India has shown a great deal of resilience. It is sheltered from any crisis triggered by any external macroeconomics shock as other East Asian Countries suffered. This is all due to a flexible exchange rate regime, the foreign reserves are high, the capital account is not yet fully convertible, and banks and their customers have limited foreign exchange exposure.

Nationalisation Of Banks In India

The nationalisation of banks in India took place in 1969 by Mrs. Indira Gandhi the then prime minister. It nationalised 14 banks then. These banks were mostly owned by businessmen and even managed by them.

• Central Bank of India

• Bank of Maharashtra

• Dena Bank

• Punjab National Bank

• Syndicate Bank

• Canara Bank

• Indian Bank

• Indian Overseas Bank

• Bank of Baroda

• Union Bank

• Allahabad Bank

• United Bank of India

• UCO Bank

• Bank of India

Befor the steps of nationalisation of Indian banks, only State Bank of India (SBI) was nationalised. It took place in July 1955 under the SBI Act of 1955. Nationalisation of Seven State Banks of India (formed subsidiary) took place on 19th July, 1960.

The State Bank of India is India's largest commercial bank and is ranked one of the top five banks worldwide. It serves 90 million customers through a network of 9,000 branches and it offers -- either directly or through subsidiaries -- a wide range of banking services.

The second phase of nationalisation of Indian banks took place in the year 1980. Seven more banks were nationalised with deposits over 200 crores. Till this year, approximately 80% of the banking segment in India were under Government ownership.

After the nationalisation of banks in India, the branches of the public sector banks rose to approximately 800% in deposits and advances took a huge jump by 11,000%.

• 1955 : Nationalisation of State Bank of India.

• 1959 : Nationalisation of SBI subsidiaries.

• 1969 : Nationalisation of 14 major banks.

• 1980 : Nationalisation of seven banks with deposits over 200 crores.

Scheduled Commercial Banks In India

The commercial banking structure in India consists of:

• Scheduled Commercial Banks in India

• Unscheduled Banks in India

Scheduled Banks in India constitute those banks which have been included in the Second Schedule of Reserve Bank of India(RBI) Act, 1934. RBI in turn includes only those banks in this schedule which satisfy the criteria laid down vide section 42 (6) (a) of the Act.

As on 30th June, 1999, there were 300 scheduled banks in India having a total network of 64,918 branches.The scheduled commercial banks in India comprise of State bank of India and its associates (, nationalised banks (19), foreign banks (45), private sector banks (32), co-operative banks and regional rural banks.

"Scheduled banks in India" means the State Bank of India constituted under the State Bank of India Act, 1955 (23 of 1955), a subsidiary bank as defined in the State Bank of India (Subsidiary Banks) Act, 1959 (38 of 1959), a corresponding new bank constituted under section 3 of the Banking Companies (Acquisition and Transfer of Undertakings) Act, 1970 (5 of 1970), or under section 3 of the Banking Companies (Acquisition and Transfer of Undertakings) Act, 1980 (40 of 1980), or any other bank being a bank included in the Second Schedule to the Reserve Bank of India Act, 1934 (2 of 1934), but does not include a co-operative bank".

"Non-scheduled bank in India" means a banking company as defined in clause (c) of section 5 of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 (10 of 1949), which is not a scheduled bank".

The following are the Scheduled Banks in India (Public Sector):

• State Bank of India

• State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur

• State Bank of Hyderabad

• State Bank of Indore

• State Bank of Mysore

• State Bank of Patiala

• State Bank of Saurashtra

• State Bank of Travancore

• Andhra Bank

• Allahabad Bank

• Bank of Baroda

• Bank of India

• Bank of Maharashtra

• Canara Bank

• Central Bank of India

• Corporation Bank

• Dena Bank

• Indian Overseas Bank

• Indian Bank

• Oriental Bank of Commerce

• Punjab National Bank

• Punjab and Sind Bank

• Syndicate Bank

• Union Bank of India

• United Bank of India

• UCO Bank

• Vijaya Bank

The following are the Scheduled Banks in India (Private Sector):

• Vysya Bank Ltd

• Axis Bank Ltd

• Indusind Bank Ltd

• ICICI Banking Corporation Bank Ltd

• Global Trust Bank Ltd

• HDFC Bank Ltd

• Centurion Bank Ltd

• Bank of Punjab Ltd

• IDBI Bank Ltd

The following are the Scheduled Foreign Banks in India:

• American Express Bank Ltd.

• ANZ Gridlays Bank Plc.

• Bank of America NT & SA

• Bank of Tokyo Ltd.

• Banquc Nationale de Paris

• Barclays Bank Plc

• Citi Bank N.C.

• Deutsche Bank A.G.

• Hongkong and Shanghai Banking Corporation

• Standard Chartered Bank.

• The Chase Manhattan Bank Ltd.

• Dresdner Bank AG.

From India , Coimbatore

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