The Reserve Bank of India has empowered practicing company secretaries to issue Diligence Reports to scheduled commercial banks which will confirm the mandatory compliance with all statutory and contractual obligations by companies availing multiple banking or consortium lending arrangements. Primary Urban Co-operative Banks have also come under this directive of the country’s central bank. These Diligence Reports have to be obtained on a semi-annual basis.

Speaking to newspersons on the sideline of the two-day workshop on ‘Diligence Reports for Banks’ in Kolkata on Friday, the chairman of the Institute of Company Secretaries of India (Eastern region) Ashok Pareek said the RBI had recognized the immense value that company secretaries bring to table today. “In view of the enormous responsibility and the trust reposed on company secretaries, the Institute has decided to host the names of company secretaries in practice (having not less than five years post membership experience and having attended the training workshop(s) on Diligence Report for Banks organized by the ICSI) on the Institute’s website,” he said.

Armed with the mandate, ICSI has set about providing the requisite training to its members through nationwide seminars and workshops. These, Mr Pareek said were aimed at assisting fellow company secretaries to get a thorough understanding of the background, scope and the detailed knowledge level required for undertaking assignments of Diligence Report for Banks. The two-day seminar ICSI-EIRC organized the two-day seminar in Kolkata, where format of the Report, methodology, compliance inputs and check list and competency building was discussed threadbare, was the first such effort and will be taken up at other centres as well. The speakers at the Kolkata edition of the programme were S. N. Ananthasubramanian, a practicing company secretary, Mumbai & Council Member, ICSI, Dr. S. D. Israni, also a practising company secretary in Mumbai, M. V. Phadke, general manager (Legal), IDBI Bank Limited, Mumbai, Iyer Gopalkrishnan, general manager – Listing, Bombay Stock Exchange Limited, Mumbai, P. K. Bhattacharjee, a former Dy. Managing Director, State Bank of India , Kolkata, Biswajit Choudhuri, former Chairman-cum-Managing Director, United Bank of India , Kolkata and R. N. Vadivelu, Chief Executive, Foreign Exchange Dealer’s Association of India (FEDAI), Mumbai.

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