Bharat Bandh 2020 | Banking, transport and other services across the nation are expected to be affected on Wednesday as trade unions have called a nationwide strike, where at least 25 crore workers will take part to protest against the Centre's labour and economic policies.
Ten Central Trade Unions (CTUs) — INTUC, AITUC, HMS, CITU, AIUTUC, TUCC, SEWA, AICCTU, LPF, UTUC — along with various sectoral independent federations and associations will rally against the "anti-people" policies of the BJP-led NDA government.
Public Sector Undertaking (PSU) banks like Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank, Syndicate Bank are likely to be amongst the most affected, The Indian Express reported.
Services like deposit and withdrawal, cheque clearing and instrument issuance are likely to be impacted due to the strike. However, services at private sector banks are unlikely to be affected.
Several banks have already informed stock exchanges about the strike and its impact on banking services, reported PTI.
People might face difficulty as ATM services across the country are also likely to face the burden in Wednesday's general strike. However, NEFT services will remain available round the clock.
Various bank employee associations, including All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA), All India Bank Officers' Association (AIBOA), Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI), Indian National Bank Employees Federation (INBEF), Indian National Bank Officers Congress (INBOC) and Bank Karmachari Sena Mahasangh (BKSM) have expressed their willingness to participate in the strike.
Country's leading lender State Bank of India (SBI) said the strike is set to have minimal impact on its operations adding very few SBI employees will be a part of the six bank unions participating in the strike.
In West Bengal, trade unions affiliated to Left and other parties called for a bandh against the economic policies of the BJP government. However, the TMC-led state government said it will not support any bandh.
Transport Minister Suvendu Adhikari said that the West Bengal Travel Corporation will operate 22 percent additional buses on Wednesday. The state government will also offer insurance cover to vehicles against damages during the bandh.
All vehicles registered within the state of West Bengal have been insured by the Transport Department with an insurance coverage of up to Rs 6 lakh.
Meanwhile, in Kerala, the trade unions exempted the state's tourism sector from Wednesday's general strike.
Kerala Travel Mart (KTM) Society hailed as "exemplary" the decision by political parties and trade unions to exempt the state's tourism sector from Wednesdays general strike.
The Centre on Tuesday had warned the CTUs against the 24-hour nationwide strike, according to a personnel ministry order.
"Any employee going on strike in any form would face the consequences which, besides deduction of wages, may also include appropriate disciplinary action," the order said.
In a missive issued to all central government departments, it said existing instructions prohibit a government servant from participating in any form of strike including mass casual leave etc.
The Supreme Court has also agreed in several judgments that going on a strike is a grave misconduct under the rules and that misconduct by the government employees is required to be dealt with in accordance with law, it said.
"All officers are also requested not to sanction casual leave or any other kind of leave to the officers and employees, if applied for, during the period of proposed strike, and ensure that willing officers are allowed hindrance free entry into the office premises," said the order.
With inputs from PTI
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Updated Date: Jan 08, 2020 08:42:01 IST