Changes brought about in the LIC (Amendment) Bill, which paved the way for the Government to increase the paid-up capital of the state-owned insurer to Rs. 100 crore from Rs. 5 crore, have strengthened the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC), said K. Swaminathan, general secretary of South Zone Insurance Employees Federation
Addressing the ‘Life Insurance Nationalisation Day' celebrations here on Thursday, he said that the LIC (Amendment) Bill was not passed in its original form and several changes were effected by the Government only after intense agitations by trade unions.
The vociferous protests ensured that the country's largest life insurer gained some operational autonomy and also retained the sovereign guarantee.
With the money collected as premium by the LIC being used to develop the nation's infrastructure by building roads, bridges and power lines, it was all the more imperative that the company remained as a public sector undertaking. The trade unions in public sector insurance firms must take measures to ensure that LIC remained a public sector undertaking and protect the entire banking and finance sector, he said.
Despite the arrival of 22 private players since the insurance sector was liberalised and opened up about a decade back, Mr. Swaminathan said that LIC still commanded 68 per cent of the market share. The LIC sold 3.11 crore new policies in the last fiscal and had already achieved 2.39 crore so far in this fiscal.
G. Meenakshisundaram, president, Insurance Corporation Employees Union, Madurai Division, spoke.