Begusarai is a town in the Indian state of Bihar. It functions as the administrative headquarters of the Begusarai district which lies on the northern bank of Ganges. It was established and made into a part of the Munger District 1870. The communists have had a strong hold on Begusarai and thus the town was once called the "Leningrad of Bihar." The city is divided into three floodplains called the Ganga Floodplain, the Burhi Gandak Floodplain and the Kareha-Bagmati Floodplain. Agriculture is the pillar of Begusarais economy. The principal cash crops of the area are oilseeds, aniseed, tobacco, jute, potato, red chilies and tomato. Fruits such as Litchi, Mango, Guava and Banana are also cultivated in the area. Recently basil leaves and pearl farming has attracted local farmers. The Barauni refinery contributes considerably to the state exchequer yearly. The city has around 2.5 lakh residents who are mostly employed in the agricultural sector.
In 2000, Indian Overseas Bank engaged in an initial public offering (IPO) that brought the governments share in the banks equity down to 75%. In 2001, the IOB acquired the Mumbai-based Adarsha Janata Sahakari Bank. Then in 2009, the bank took over Shree Suvarna Sahakari Bank, which was founded in 1969 and had its head office in Pune. Since 2006, Shree Suvarna Sahakari Bank had been in administration. It had nine offices in Pune, 2 in Mumbai and 1 in Shirpur. The total strength of employees was estimated to be more than 100. On 29 August 2003, the Indian Overseas Bank has opened an extension counter at New Kathiresan Temple complex, Bambalapitiya, Ceylon. The IOB opened a representative office in Guangzhou, China in 2005 followed which the bank opened another representative office in Kuala Lumpur and 2009 in Dubai, UAE. In the new millennium, international expansion started once again. The bank took over Bharat Overseas Bank in 2007. After three years, Malaysia granted a commercial banking license to a local bank jointly owned by BOB, IOB, and the Andhra Bank. The new bank named, India International Bank ( IIB Malaysia), began its business in 2012 in Kuala Lumpur and had a large population of Indians. The Andhra Bank holds a 25% stake in its joint-venture, BOB owns 40%, and remaining 35% is with IOB. On 31 August 2013, the Indian Overseas Bank has opened an offshore banking unit in Colombo, Sri Lanka. The bank also converted its existing Extension Counter at Ceylon into a full-fledged branch.