Bank merger: With the large-scale merger of public sector banks in the offing, Punjab National Bank (PNB) will discuss capital infusion of up to Rs 18,000 crore in a meeting to be held on September 5. As part of the government’s plan to merge 10 public sector banks into four entities, PNB will merge Oriental Bank of Commerce and United Bank of India within itself. The meeting of the board of directors is being convened to chalk out a blueprint for amalgamation of banks as declared by the government after consultations with the Reserve Bank of India.
According to government sources, the merger of public sector banks is aimed at making them global scale lenders. With this, the number of public sector banks in the country will come down to 12 from 19. Earlier, Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman allayed fears of retrenchment of employees as a fallout of this move. “I have very clearly underlined the fact that there shall not be one employee removed. Not at all”, Sitharaman said in response to apprehensions voiced by the All India Bank Employees’ Union.
The union members raised fears closure of banks and job losses. They also objected to the merger plan. In a statement, they said, “The proposals which the government has moved are unmindful since they have no logic or rationale. Neither it is the case that a weak bank has been merged with a strong one nor are geographically compatible banks being merged.”