Banking Current Affairs 2015

Union Government unveils Indradhanush Mission for PSBs

Union Government has launched a seven pronged plan called Indradhanush Mission to revamp functioning of public sector banks (PSBs).

It was launched by Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley in New Delhi.

Facts about Indradhanush Mission

The seven shades of Indradhanush mission include appointments, de-stressing PSBs, capitalisation, empowerment, framework of accountability and governance reforms.

It seeks to achieve the objective of economic growth revival through improving credit and minimising the political interference in the functioning of PSBs.

  • Appointments: Selection of non-executive chairman in remaining 6 state owned PSBs till November 2015.
  • Appointing MD & CEO of two PSBs as early as possible.
  • Bank Board Bureau (BBB): It will be a body of ’eminent’ professionals to be selected within 6 months i.e. February 2015.
  • It will become functional from Financial year 2016-17 i.e. form 1st April 2016.
  • Capitalisation: Infuse 25,000 crore rupees of capital into debt-laden banks in this fiscal in phased manner. Out of this 20,000 crore rupees would be injected in August 2015.
  • Rest 5,000 crore rupees will be performance based allocation to be allocated in the last quarter of 2016.
  • De-stressing PSBs: To develop vibrant debt market for PSBs in order to reduce lending pressure on banks.
  • Strengthen asset reconstruction of companies.
  • Empowerment: Provide greater flexibility in hiring of manpower in PSBs.
  • Framework of accountability: It will seek to streamline vigilance process for quick action in case major frauds and also include connivance of staff.
  • Governance reforms in PSBs: Next Gyan Sangam (also known as the Banker’s Retreat) will be held from 14 to 16 January 2016. Employee Stock Option Plan (ESOP) will be initiated for top management.


Union Government to form Bank Board Bureau

Union Government has decided to set up a Bank Board Bureau (BBB) to monitor key performance indicators of two dozen public sector banks (PSBs).

It was announced by Union Finance Minister Arun Jailtley as part of a seven-pronged revamp plan for PSBs dubbed as Indradhanush (rainbow) plan.

Facts about Bank Board Bureau

  • Bank Board Bureau (BBB) will start the functioning from next financial year i.e. from 1st April 2016 and the selection of its member will start in the next six months.
  • It will replace existing system Appointments Board in which appointments for top level jobs at PSBs are made by an appointments committee led by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) Governor.
  • Composition: The BBB will be a body of ’eminent’ professionals and shall consist of only one government official. It will be six members body with at least 3 former bankers, 2 professionals and secretary, department of financial services representing government.
  • Functions: Give recommendations for appointment of full-time Directors as well as non-Executive Chairman of PSBs.
  • Give advice to PSBs in developing differentiated strategies for raising funds through innovative financial methods and instruments and to deal with issues of stressed assets.
  • Guide banks on mergers and consolidations.


Axis Bank launched the First Multi-Currency Contactless Card service in India

India’s third largest private sector lender, Axis Bank has launched the first Contactless Debit, Credit and Multi-Currency Forex Card in association with VISA payWave in the country.

Axis Bank will offer a contactless debit/credit cards to its 1.7 million premium customers which also enables withdrawal of 15 currencies via Multi-Currency Forex facility.

To facilitate contactless cards operations bank will upgrade 50,000, of its point of sale (PoS) machines across the country.

How does Axix Bank’s Contactless Card works?

  • Axis Bank Contactless cards contain a chip and an antenna (based on radio frequency) that facilitates seamless, faster and hassle free payments.
  • The customer has to enter the purchase amount in the contactless PoS terminal and then simply has to tap the card on the terminal to complete his/her payment wirelessly and in a secure manner.

The bank has introduced this card in line with RBI’s guidelines of promoting PIN-less small ticket transactions and to provide service to its customers with the global standards.