On Saturday, most of the banks, including State Bank of India (SBI), Punjab National Bank (PNB) and Bank of Baroda (BoB), have already informed their customers that functioning of branches and offices will be impacted if the strike takes off.
Around one million bankers across India have decided to go on a strike on Tuesday, February 28 in view of their various demands, including accountability of top executives in view of mounting bad loans in the banking sector. On Tuesday, operations at public sector banks may be hit causing inconvenience to the people, most unions under the aegis of United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) have threatened to go on strike to press for various demands.
On Saturday, most of the banks, including State Bank of India (SBI), Punjab National Bank (PNB) and Bank of Baroda (BoB), have already informed their customers that functioning of branches and offices will be impacted if the strike takes off. But customers who deal with private banks don’t need to worry, the functioning of private lenders like ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank is expected to function normally. There are chances that there might be a delay in cheque clearances.
The UFBU is an umbrella body of 9 unions. But two of the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh affiliates – National Organisation of Bank Workers and National Organisation of Bank Officers – are not part of the strike, news agency PTI reported. The conciliation meeting before the chief labour commissioner of February 21 failed to break a logjam as the bank representatives did not agree to demands and put conditions, All India Bank Employees’ Association (AIBEA) General Secretary C H Venkatachalam was quoted by PTI. Also Read – 7th Pay Commission: Announcement for higher allowances after Assembly election results
The attempts to find a solution to the demands raised by bank unions yielded no results and hence, UFBU decided to proceed with the proposed strike on February 28, Venkatachalam said. The bank unions are also opposed to the proposed labour reforms of the government and outsourcing of permanent jobs in the banking sector.
Among the demand made by bank employees, include compensation of employees and officers for extra hours of work put by them after demonetisation in November and early initiation of the process of next wage revision of bank employees.
The union have also demanded adequate recruitment in all cadres, stringent measures to recover bad loans and accountability of top executives working in a bank. The union has also asked to take criminal action against wilful defaulters.
The UFBU, which claims membership of nearly 10 lakh banks across India, had also requested the government for cost reimbursement of demonetisation to banks. According to a rough estimate, as many as 27 public sector banks across India control 75 per cent of the total business.