The postal department and the billionaire founder of Sun Pharmaceutical Industries are among 41 applicants seeking permits to run a new category of banks planned to bring basic banking services within the reach of millions.
Sun Pharma's Dilip Shanghvi has applied for a permit for the so-called payments banks , a list of applicants published by the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) showed on Wednesday. Payments banks can take deposits but will not be allowed to lend.
Other applicants for a permit include information technology services provider Tech Mahindra Ltd and satellite television operator Videocon d2h Ltd, the central bank said.
Country's top three mobile phone operators Bharti Airtel, Vodafone India and Idea Cellular previously confirmed they had applied for payments bank permits.
Reliance Industries, controlled by India's richest man Mukesh Ambani, also applied for the permit.
For small finance banks, the other category of banking permits on offer, there were 72 applicants, including Infosys Ltd's former finance chief V. Balakrishnan, the central bank announcement said.
The RBI also named two external advisory panels which will evaluate the applications. It has not given a timeline on when it will announce winners.