Bilaspur is the second largest city in the Bilaspur District, situated in the Indian state of Chhattisgarh. It is believed that Bilaspur had been a colony of a few fishermens huts in the 17th century and has thus been named after a fisherwoman called "Bilasa." The city experiences hot dry summer and mild winters with medium rains during the monsoon. The city is located on the banks of the Arpa River. It is a rain-fed river that originates from the Maikal Range in central India. This region rich in dolomite and is surrounded by the coal mines of the Hasdeo valley as well as verdant green forests. It serves as the headquarters of South Eastern Coalfields Limited. The Arpa river passes through the center of the city and there are many river view areas built in the area for recreational purposes. The city is known for its unique aromatic rice variety called Doobraj rice and its intricate handloom weaved colorful soft Kosa silk saris. These drive the economy of the state along with the mining industry. Bilaspur connects tourists to a plethora of interesting tourist spots such as Amarkantak, Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary and Tiger Reserve, Malhar, Ratanpur and quite a few dams in the vicinity.
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.