KCCI opposes SAC decision to bring J&K Bank under RTI purview

Excelsior Correspondent
SRINAGAR, Nov 26: The Kashmir Chamber of Commerce and Industry (KCCI) has opposed the decision of the State Administrative Council (SAC) to bring the J&K Bank under the purview of RTI, CVC and the State Legislature.
In a press statement here, a KCCI spokesman said the J&K Bank cannot be treated as any other Public Sector Undertaking as it is a public listed company and is also governed under Banking Laws. The decision is being seen as unwarranted interference in the functioning of the Bank. It is because of the autonomy, Bank enjoyed since it’s inception, that it has attained present level and become an important component in the existing economic structure of the State.
The spokesman said more than 50,000 shareholders have stakes in the Bank. The Government is only one of the shareholders with only 59.3 % shareholding. It is neither a department of the Government nor is owned by the Government. It is not even substantially financed by the Government. Instead, the Government receives heavy dividends from the Bank. More than 90% of our members are connected with the Bank in one form or the other.
KCCI further said that J&K State has seen so many Governors in last seventy years. The State has been brought under Governors rule eleven times. Not a single Governor tinkered with the functioning of the Bank. It is for the first time that Bank had to engage additionally 582 banking associates when they were not needed as per the requirements. But for the intervention of the Executive head, more people came to be engaged increasing the avoidable expenditure of the Bank. Engagement of our unemployed youth cannot be resolved by providing them services in the Bank.
” The Bank has over a period of time become synonymous with the identity of the people of the State and occupies a special sentimental place in their hearts. They consider it to be their own bank. The people look upon the Bank for financial help. Since it is now a PSU, people who need help will have to follow cumbersome red tapism and seek clearances from bureaucracy or ministry. The CEO of the Bank is reduced to a Managing Director of the Company,” he added.
Referring to NPA , he said the people in the State repay the loans they borrow from the Bank, but it is only few persons holding political power who can be counted, amongst others, major defaulters. It will be difficult for the Bank to proceed against such defaulters. He said the KCCI demands that the Bank’s status as it was on November 22, 2018 should be restored.


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