10 out of 21 government banks do not have a woman director

10 out of 21 government banks do not have a woman director
118 companies out of top 500 in India still don't have a woman director on boardPixabay.com
  • According to a study done by Prime Database, 118 companies out of top 500 companies still haven’t appointed a woman director on their board as is required by law.
  • 11 top Indian banks feature in the list, an industry which once had many prominent women running the show.
  • Top 500 companies have to appoint women directors on their board by April 1, 2019.
For a long time, India’s private banking sector has been led by women even when it wasn’t a law.

However, India’s state-owned banks have consistently lagged in giving women a chance.

Even today, when SEBI mandates companies to appoint have at least one woman director on their board, 10 out of 21 Indian government banks don’t have one.

Marquee names like Canara Bank, Bank of India, Indian Bank, Union Bank of India, Indian Overseas Bank, UCO Bank, Vijaya Bank, Andhra Bank, United Bank of India and Dena Bank have failed to comply with the law.

Under Section 149 of the Companies Act 2013, every company needs to have at least one woman director. Last year, SEBI had directed all top 500 companies to imply the same by April 1, 2019.

Government banks can’t complain that there aren’t enough skilled women leaders as their private sector peers have been steered by women for years now. This is a reflection of the glass ceiling in public companies in India.


The Indian banking industry had leaders like Arundhati Bhattacharya of State Bank of India, Chanda Kochhar of ICICI Bank, Shikha Sharma of Axis Bank and Usha Ananthasubramanian of Allahabad Bank, who once found themselves in every list of top women in banking. However, since then they have either resigned from their position or have been embroiled in scams/controversies leading to a forceful exit.

Government banks are not alone. The gender bias in India spans across sectors. According to the data released by Prime Database, 118 companies out of the top 500 in India are yet to appoint a woman director on their board.

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