FSIB recommends CS Setty as next SBI chairman

Setty had spent about 36 years at the bank and scored over the other two contendors in the interviews.
Challa Sreenivasulu Setty
Challa Sreenivasulu Setty(Photo | SBI website)

MUMBAI: Challa Sreenivasulu Setty, the senior-most managing director of the State Bank of India, is set to be the next chairman of the nation’s largest lender provided the government goes ahead with the recommendation of his name by the nodal selection body Financial Services Institutions Bureau (FSIB).

Setty, who has spent close to 36 years at the bank, has scored over the other two contenders - Ashwini Kumar Tewari and Vinay M Tonse, who are also the managing directors of the bank - at the interviews held on Friday in Mumbai, the FSIB said in its website.

The interviews were earlier scheduled for May 21 - 22 but were called off at the last minute.

“The Financial Services Institutions Bureau has interfaced with three candidates on June 29, 2024 for the position of chairman in State Bank of India. Keeping in view their performance in the interface, their overall experience and the extant parameters, the bureau recommends CS Setty for the position,” FSIB said in its website.

The role of the FSIB is to recommend a name and the final decision is taken by the Appointments Committee of the Cabinet headed by the prime minister. But normally, the committee goes ahead with the FSIB recommendation and makes the formal appointment.

If the government clears his name, Setty will assume charge on August 28, when the incumbent chairman Dinesh Kumar Khara is set to retire after he got a 10-month extension last October. Khara will turn 63, the upper age limit for the position of SBI chairman, on the superannuation day, was at the helm from October 7, 2020.

The FSIB is an autonomous body under the Centre is the head-hunter for the heads of state-owned banks and financial institutions.

As per convention, the chairman is appointed from the four serving managing directors of SBI provided they have at least three years of service left and have been a managing director for at least a year. Therefore, the senior-most MD Alok Kumar Choudhary is not eligible for the interview as he is retiring on June 30 and so the new MD Rana Ashutosh Kumar Singh will join only on June 30. The FSIB has already recommended the name of Singh as the fourth managing director.

The second-rung management consists of around a dozen deputy managing directors and more than three dozen of chief general managers. DMDs and CGMs are respectively eligible to become MDs and DMDs. All the heads of SBI subsidiaries like SBI Life, SBI General, SBI Caps and SBI Cards are headed by persons with DMD ranks in the bank.

Traditionally, as also by the SBI Act mandate, the SBI chairman is appointed from the serving managing directors, though there were a couple of exceptions to this in the past.

The first instance was in 1985 when the government appointed DN Ghosh, an Indian Audit & Account Services officer, as the chairman for a four-year term. Another occasion was when MN Goiporia, a career banker from the Central Bank of India, came on board as chairman in February 1990, but his stint lasted for about 2.5 years until the end of July 1992.

Since then, internal candidates, starting with Dipankar Basu in February 1993, have occupied the corner room on the 18th floor of the SBI Bhavan in Nariman Point.

The FSIB is an autonomous body responsible for making recommendations to appoint senior executives to public sector financial institutions. Established in 2022, the bureau is headed by Bhanu Pratap Sharma, a former secretary in the department of personnel and training, as its chairman, with the secretaries of the financial services and public enterprises departments serving as members, along with three outside expert members who include an RBI deputy governor.

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