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Banking industry not in favour of women CEOs this year in India

Banking industry not in favour of women CEOs this year in India
Highlights

Top women bankers in India seem to be riding a bumpy road since October last year, when Arundhati Bhattacharya completed her extended term as the chairman of SBI.Bhattacharya is still much revered even post retirement, but unfortunately, others are having themselves tangled up in controversies.

NEW DELHI: Top women bankers in India seem to be riding a bumpy road since October last year, when Arundhati Bhattacharya completed her extended term as the chairman of SBI.Bhattacharya is still much revered even post retirement, but unfortunately, others are having themselves tangled up in controversies.

April 2018 could've been considered the “cruelest month”, starting from when the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) questioned Axis Bank board's proposal to reappoint Shikha Sharma as managing director (MD) and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for a fourth term and asked the lender to reconsider its decision.

Sharma announced that she will step down in December 2018– two-and-a-half years before her term was due to end, a week after the central bank stated that it was unhappy with the bank's rising bad loans. Sharma is the longest serving woman CEO in the financial sector.

Usha Ananthasubramanian, the MD and CEO of Allahabad Bank was stripped of her powers when the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) named her as an accused in the $2 billion Nirav Modi scam, which occurred on her watch as CEO of Punjab National Bank (PNB).

Usha was due to retire in August this year.Ananthasubramanian headed PNB from 2015 to 2017.

In recent news, Chanda Kochhar, the MD and CEO of ICICI Bank was forced to go on an extended leave, as the issue of a possible conflict of interest regarding the grant of a loan to Kochhar's husband Deepak's Videocon Group is being speculated.

Currently, the ICICI Bank has appointed Sandeep Bakhshi as the chief operating officer (COO) of the bank. With Kochhar's tenure ending in March-end next year, Kochhar might be the last woman standing in India's banking sector, seeming to be on shaky ground.

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