Mumbai: The new bank licences are expected to be issued by the Reserve Bank by the end of this fiscal, a top Finance Ministry official said on Wednesday.
    
"The RBI has answered 440-odd queries....Now, we have to see how many applications will actually come by July 1. Then those applications will be scrutinized by the internal committee of the RBI and subsequently by an external committee....
    
"I hope that if all goes well, we will have some kind of decision by end of this fiscal," Financial Services Secretary Rajiv Takru said.
    
Anything beyond this timeline would be a slippage, which is avoidable, he told reporters on the sidelines of an IMC- organized banking event. On June 3, RBI released detailed explanation to the queries from prospective licence seekers. Takru, however, declined to give the number of new licences that would be given.
    
Earlier, the Secretary said despite pressure from various stakeholders to change the 25 percent minimum branch opening requirement in rural areas by new players, the provision remained unchanged as the Government is aiming for higher penetration of banking services.
    
On filling up the vacant posts of CMDs and EDs at government banks, Takru said 30 names have been identified for these top positions and they will be appointed soon.

(Agencies)

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