Corporation Bank, founded in 1906 in Udupi, Karnataka state, India, is one of the Indian Banks in Public Sector Undertaking. The body was founded with an initial capital of Rs. 5000 (US$ 100), and first day’s canvassed resources of less than one US$ 1, has currently (31 march 2004) 11,325 full time employees, and operates from several branches in India.
The Bank is a public sector unit with 57.17% of share capital held by the Government of India. The Bank came out with its Initial Public Offer (IPO) in October 1997 and 37.87% of Share Capital is presently held by the Public and Financial Institutions. The Bank’s Net Worth stood at Rs. 3, 054.92 crores as on 31 March 2005.
Corporation Bank, the oldest banking institution in the erstwhile undivided Dakshina Kannada District of Karnataka and one of the oldest banks in India, was founded in 1906 in the Temple Town of Udupi, by a small group of philanthropists’ led by Khan Bahadur Haji, Abdulla Haji, Kasim Saheeb Bahadur. The need to start this bank was felt because there was no such facility at Udupi, an important trading centre next to Mangalore in Dakshina Kannada District.
The indigenous banking was largely in the hands of a few rich private individuals and something had to be done provide relief to the common man from the clutches of the money lenders who held full sway. The first branch of a modern bank established in the district was the “Bank of Madras”, one of the three Presidency Banks, which set up its office in Mangalore in export of plantation products. Its agent used to visit Udupi once a fortnight or so, to do banking. Money remittances had to be made only through postal medium.
To overcome these drawbacks and also to provide banking facilities for Udupi in particular and the district in general, a cosmopolitan group of philanthropist led by Haji Abdulla Saheeb made a bold venture to start this institution. What inspired the founding fathers was the fevour of Swadeshism. For promoting the Bank, the Founder President made an appeal saying, “The primary object in forming the ‘Corporation’ is not only to cultivate habits of thirft amongst all classes of people, without distinction of caste or creed, but also habits of co-operation amongst all classes. This is ‘swadeshism’, pure and simple and every lover of the country is expected to come forward and co-operate in achieving the end in view”. They rightly defined swadeshism as institution-building to aid activity through co-operation of all, shorn of distinction of caste and creed.
“The Canara Banking Corporation (Udupi) Ltd”. As the institution was called then, started functioning as a ‘Nidhi’ with a humble beginning. The initial capital was Rs. 5000/- and at the end of the first day, its resources stood at 38 Rupees-13 Anna’s and 2 Pies.
The setting up of the Canara Banking Corporation Ltd. Seems to have given a fillip to co-operative Banking and also to regular banking elsewhere in the district. Between 1909 and 1917, six co-operative banks came into being and during the decade immediately after the First World War (1914-1918) south canara gave birth to as many as eight banks. It is to the credit of this bank that despite two world wars, economic depression and stiff competition, the bank not only quite survived, but also made satisfactory progress.
Having been started at Udupi, the bank first branched out by opening a branch at Kundapur in 1923. The second branch of the bank was opened in Mangalore at Car Street in 1926. The bank stepped into Kodagu District in 1934 by opening its seventh branch in Madikeri. In 1937, the bank was included in the second scheduled of Reserve Bank Act, 1934. In 1939, the bank’s name changed from “Canara Banking Corporation (Udupi) Ltd” to “Canara Banking Corporation Ltd”. The bank graduated into a regional bank in 1945 when the total number of its branches’ stood at 28. In the year 1961,...