Seventy two years after it was formed, the curtains came down on State Bank of Travancore (SBT) on Saturday, following its merger with parent company State Bank of India (SBI).

 

SBT was established in 1945 as Travancore Bank Ltd and sponsored by the erstwhile princely state of the same name. It became an associate of SBI in 1959.

 

The branches of SBT have already been renamed as SBI. The merger will give SBI 1360 branches in Kerala with an employee strength of over 14,000, making it the largest bank in the state.

 

Existing customers of SBT need not worry as there will not be any changes to their accounts, passbooks and cheque books. Customers, who are account holders in both banks, can use their existing account numbers and passbooks for transactions with till April 23, after which a software will combine the accounts of the same name into a single entity.

 

The merger came into effect despite strong opposition from both the LDF and the UDF in Kerala. The state Assembly had passed a unanimous resolution asking the Centre and the RBI not to approve the merger. The Union cabinet approved the acquisition on February 15.

 

Besides SBT, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Hyderabad, State Bank of Bikaner and Jaipur and State Bank of Patiala will also be merged with SBI on Saturday, and the assets will be transferred.

 

With the merger, SBI enters the list of top 50 largest banks in the world, with an asset base of Rs 37 lakh crore, 22,500 branches and 58,000 ATMs and 50 crore customers.