The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) has lifted a restriction it has imposed on Fairfax-backed CSB Bank, formerly The Catholic Syrian Bank Ltd, on opening new branches in view of the delayed Initial Public Offering (IPO).
The bank, in a regulatory filing on Tuesday said that the regulatory restrictions by RBI on opening new branches, through their letter in January 30, 2015, has been lifted with effect from January 10, 2020. The general permission to open new branches was withdrawn in 2015 in view of the delayed IPO of shares of the Bank, and it was not permitted to open any new branches without prior approval of RBI.
It added, "Accordingly, the bank has currently open branches under the general permission of Reserve Bank of India for all banks subject to the condition that the Bank should ensure that atleast 25 per cent of the total number of Banking outlets opened during a financial year are opened in unbanked rural centres, which is applicable for all banks, as part of the general permission."
The bank, in earlier regulatory filing said that following the RBI's restriction, in February and March, 2019, it has requested the regulator to grant permission to open new branches. RBI, subject to certain conditions, granted permission to the bank to open 10 new branches at certain locations indicated by the RBI. As on September 30, 2019, CSB Bank has 412 branches excluding three service branches and three asset recovery branches, and 290 ATMs across India.
Fairfax, which signed an agreement to pick up stake in the Bank in 2018, currently holds 49.73 per cent stake. After raising the fund, the bank went for an IPO in November, 2019.