POINTS TO BE LOOKED INTO, WHILE TAKING CHARGE OF A BRANCH
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Banking industry has now a fairly large number of young
officers who have joined the banking service in last few years or so.
They have also been promoted to Scale II and Scale III in fairly short period as
compared to their seniors who took almost two decades to reach Scale III.
This kind of quick promotions has resulted in postings of Incumbent Incharges
who have no idea of branch working and in depth knowledge of pitfalls once they
have taken charge of the branch. In terms of the guidelines, in most
of the cases, he becomes personally responsible for the lapses of the previous
incumbent, if he / she fails to report such lapses at the time of charge
taking or within the timeframe prescribed. Now, a senior banker has come to
their rescue and sent us the following article. All officers who do
not have much experience of branch incumbency must read this article carefully
so that they face the minimal problems at a later stage. [These may
need some fine tuning based on the internal guidelines of individual banks]
Action to be taken
Cash balances to be physically verified. It is desirable that the
opening cash is verified, as soon as one reports at the branch for which
he/she has been designated as the Branch Head. This is to be attended
to, even when his/her predecessor is present at the branch and is yet to
hand over the charge officially. Apart from branch cash, physical cash
inside ‘onsite ATM’ is also to be verified. ‘Bait Money’ and Petty Cash
are also to be checked. A report to this effect is to be submitted to
the controlling office.
Stock of Gold Coins to be meticulously verified and any discrepancies
found are to be reported to the controlling office immediately.
Ornaments of Gold Loan Borrowers are to be verified with the help of the
one of the joint custodians or a Senior Officer staff of the branch.
Physical securities held
Physical Securities (usually Bonds and Government Promissory Notes) held
on behalf of the Head Office for SLR and Investment purposes are to be
carefully checked. [Now a days there are minimal chances of such
physical scrips as most of these have been converted into demat form]
Articles in Safe Custody
All articles kept in safe custody like Parcels received (meant for
delivery to customers), Keys of vacant Lockers, Term Deposit Receipts
yet to be delivered to the depositors concerned, Term Deposit Receipts
held towards Margin on Bank Guarantees and Letters of Credit, Term
Deposit Receipts pertaining to Deposit Loans closed, Securities like LIC
policies, NSCs, Shares, Bonds and Debentures of borrowers who have
closed their loans taken by pledging these and Power of Attorney of
Officers are to be verified thoroughly.
Duplicate Keys lodged by other branches
If any nearby branch has lodged their duplicate keys of Strong Room and
Cash safes with the branch, it is to be ensured that such packets are
Joint Custodian Keys
Keys of Strong Room Main Door and Grill, Keys of Cash Safe and any other
safe (for keeping gold ornaments and other valuables and safe custody
articles), Keys of Double Lock Cabinets (for keeping Loan Documents and
Security Stationery) are to be physically verified. ATM keys are to be
checked without fail.
Certificate obtained for lodging duplicate set of aforesaid keys with
another bank/branch to be perused. If the keys set was not changed in
the last two years, it’s better to change the set.
All the security stationery like Demand Drafts, Pay Orders, CD/SB Cheque
Books etc. are to be checked at random. The stocks must tally with
computer records. Security stationery taken out and currently in use
and issued to customers, but not yet delivered to them are to be
properly accounted for.
Debit Cards, PIN Mailers, Envelopes containing Internet Passwords etc.
Stock of Debit Cards, Debit Cards issued but not yet delivered to the
customers, PIN Mailers and Envelopes containing Internet Passwords of
the customers are to be randomly checked.
All Personal Computers, Printers (Laser/Inkjet/Dot Matrix/Passbook
Printers), UPS and Modem/Router to be inspected and properly accounted
for. Warranties and Annual Maintenance Contracts in force are to be
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Action to be taken
CDs of all Licensed software (Systems and Applications Software) to be preserved carefully.
Safety and Security
Burglar’s Alarm to be checked. Fire Extinguishers and Fire Alarm to be checked. Other deficiencies and irregularities reported in the latest report of Security Inspection to be rectified. Guns and their licences etc to be verified.
Air-conditioners, Water Coolers, Token Display, Cash Counting Machines, Fax and Telephones are to be checked.
All major furniture items to be inspected with the latest Inventory Jotting. Furniture identified as unserviceable and fit to be condemned are to be segregated for further action. Residential furniture of officers transferred/retired/died are to be marked for further disposal.
Customers’ Complaints received through Zonal Office/Head Office, Banking Ombudsman, Consumer Forum and directly are to be attended on top priority.
Claims received for the deposits and securities in the name of the deceased customers are to be processed and settled quickly.
Credit proposals received shall be dealt with and decision communicated to the applicants within a reasonable time (10 to 30 days, depending upon the type of loan).
In case of working capital limits that have fallen due for renewal, appropriate action is to be taken.
Non Performing Assets
Reports of NPAs and Stressed Assets to be generated and further action for recovery is to be initiated.
Where proceedings under SARFAESI Act have been initiated, suitable follow up action must be taken without delay.
Suit Filed Cases
Files relating to Suits filed by the bank in various courts and DRTs for recovery of dues and Suits filed against the bank are to be carefully studied and necessary action taken.
Claims pending with ECGC/CGTMSME
Claims pending with ECGC/CGTMSME are to be followed up.
There are several inspections and audits conducted. Notable ones among them being 1. Annual Inspection by Internal Auditors/Inspectors of Branches 2. Statutory Inspection conducted by external auditors (after March each year) 3. Short inspection 4. Stocks and Receivables Audit 5. Surprise Verification conducted by administrative office 6. Annual Financial Audit (AFI) conducted by RBI 7. Incognito visits made by RBI/BCSBI officials for Customer Service 8. Special Inspection carried out by ZO/HO, on suspected frauds/misappropriation of funds etc. The incoming manager has to note down only the serious irregularities if any reported in any of these reports and take suitable remedial steps at once. Irregularities in Documentation and Charge Creation to be taken up first.
Reconciliation of accounts
All unreconciled/ long outstanding items in Inter-Branch Account, Account held with RBI/SBI etc. are to be examined. Similarly, long outstanding items in Suspense Accounts (Sundry Creditors/Debtors) to be studied and necessary action taken for their reversal/squaring off.
Cheques returned by other banks (for whatever reason) are to be delivered by personal delivery or Registered Post.
Action to be taken
All major units financed by the bank are to be financed by drawing a
schedule of priority.
All VIP customers and other officials and dignitaries in the vicinity
are to be met, one after another, within a fixed time frame.
Unrecovered TODs, Excess Drawings, Ad hoc limits, Bills/Cheques
Returned, Invoked Bank Guarantees paid, Devolved L.Cs etc. are to be
All these items warrant immediate action.
Submission of control returns
TDS Remittance and filing of Income Tax Returns
Recoveries in written off accounts
of the banks will have a circular relating to charging taking of the branch.
You should read the same so that all the requirements as per your bank are met.
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