The ancient city of Gaya in the Indian state of Bihar has great historical and mythological significance. It is located on the banks of the Phalgu River and is considered to be a place sanctified by the Hindu, Jain and Buddhist religions. Gaya is surrounded by small rocky hills on three sides and the river on the fourth side. The city displays a harmonious mix of natural surroundings, ancient buildings, greenery and narrow by-lanes. Gaya has been mentioned in the great Hindu epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata. Rama, Sita and Lakshmana had visited Gaya to offer "pind-daan" after their father Dasharaths death. The place appears as Gayapuri in the Mahabharata. Gaya has many household industries like incense sticks, stone crafting, power looms as well as local sweets like tilkut and lai. There are some small-scale manufacturing industries for packaging, plastic products, scrap and handlooms. Gaya is an important center for religious tourism. Hence, there are numerous affordable Hotels and other accommodations which contribute to the citys economy. Gaya boasts of a bright educational history. Pristine institutions such as the Magadh University, the Gaya College, the Gaya Engineering College support the education of the youth. A branch of the Indian Institute of Management (IIM) Bodhgaya has also been recently established in Gaya.
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.