According to reports, the government is on track to privatise two public sector banks (PSBs) and would take proper steps in the coming months.
The administration stated its intention to privatise two PSBs this year in the Union Budget for 2021-22, as well as a policy of strategic disinvestment of public sector firms. The administration is dedicated to privatising two public sector banks, according to sources, and it is on track. BPCL's divestiture is also on the cards, according to sources, and new offers will be sought. According to insiders, the government was forced to terminate the auction because only one bidder remained in the running.
The government had planned to sell its full 52.98 percent ownership in Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL) in March 2020, and had invited bidders to submit Expressions of Interest. By November 2020, at least three offers had been submitted, but only one remains as the others withdrew.
According to insiders, there are some concerns with the strategic sale of Container Corporation of India (Concor), and the process would begin once those issues are overcome. In November 2019, the Cabinet approved the strategic sale of a 30.8 percent stake in Concor, together with management control, from the government's 54.80 percent stock. After the sell-off, the government will maintain a 24 percent share but will have no veto power.
The government think tank NITI Aayog has previously recommended to the Core Group of Secretaries on Disinvestment that two banks and one insurance business be privatised. The Central Bank of India and the Indian Overseas Bank, according to insiders, are likely candidates for privatisation. According to the procedure, the Core Group of Secretaries, led by the Cabinet Secretary, will send its suggestion to the Alternative Mechanism (AM) for approval, and then to the Prime Minister's Cabinet for ultimate approval.
Economic affairs secretary, revenue secretary, expenditure secretary, corporate affairs secretary, legal affairs secretary, Department of Public Enterprises secretary, Department of Investment and Public Asset Management (DIPAM) secretary, and an administrative department secretary are all members of the Core Group of Secretaries.
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