Banking services across the country are likely to be partially affected today as two bank employees unions called for a 24-hour strike to protest against various issues including the recent bank mergers. About 3.5 lakh employees of various public sector banks are expected to strike work today.
The strike has been called by All India Bank Employees' Association (AIBEA) and the Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI) to protest against recent bank mergers, falling deposit rates and issues of job security, reported PTI.
The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) and State Bank of India (SBI) will, however, not participate in the strike, sources in them said.
Regional Rural Banks and cooperatives banks will also not participate in the strike as mergers do not affect them, sources said.
In August this year, the Central government had amalgamated 10 public sector banks (PSBs) into four entities, bringing down their total number to 12 from 27 in 2017. The move aimed at making state-owned lenders global sized banks. Big banks enhanced capacity to increase credit, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had said before the announcement of the new bank mergers.
Striking unions said they will shut the ATMs as these will be under the strike ambit.
The bank strike has the support of the central trade unions, which said the government's decision is most unfortunate and totally unwarranted, said a report in NDTV.
"All the banks who now are facing closures namely Andhra Bank, Allahabad Bank Syndicate Bank, Corporation Bank, United Bank of India and Oriental Bank of Commerce are well performing Banks and have been greatly contributing for our nation's economic development in their respective geographical areas," the report said quoting central trade unions.
Bank of Maharashtra, Syndicate Bank, Bank of Baroda have expressed concern over their providing normal customer services.
"We expect good response from all PSU and private banks," Bank Employees Federation of India (State Federation) general secretary Joydeb Dasgupta said.
SBI has claimed the impact of the strike on its operations will be minimum as most of its employees are not members of the participating unions.
A SBI union leader said they are not participating in the strike and services will be normal.
Dasgupta said SBI employees have offered moral support to the strike he said adding "It would have been good if SBI joined the strike".
AIBEA and BEFI also oppose outsourcing of regular and perennial banking jobs and privatisation of banking industry, sources in them said.
They have demanded adequate recruitment of clerical and sub-staff and urged for stringent steps for recovery of mounting bad loans, the sources added.
— With PTI inputs
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Updated Date: Oct 22, 2019 12:08:05 IST