Economy

10 lakh bank employees to go on two-day strike from today

10 lakh bank employees to go on two-day strike from today”

The unions haven't publicly announced a counteroffer for the two percent raise but say they want to continue negotiations that started earlier this month with the lenders' lobby, Indian Banks' Association (IBA), the labor ministry, and the finance ministry.

Almost 10 lakh employees working in various branches of 21 public sector banks, 13 old generation private sector banks, six foreign banks and 56 regional rural banks across the country went on the strike as the banking lobby, Indian Banks Association (IBA), offered them a nominal wage revision.

As per the minutes of the meeting on Monday, IBA officials reasoned that the hike in wages had to be limited to 2 per cent as banks were grappling with a rise in non-performing assets.

The Chief Labour Commissioner supported the issues and asked Indian Banks' Association to respond positively.

The strike paralysed banking activities across the state. "So, we have collected cash in advance from the banks for loading in the ATMs", V Balasubramanian, president, Financial Software and Systems (FSS), told IANS.

Justifying their demand for wage revision in double digits, Sudarshan said unions were asking for parity with their counterparts in central and state governments, state-run enterprises, defence and other personnel who are benefiting from the 7th Pay Commission recommendations.

Besides salaries of corporate employees, ATM withdrawals and other major banking operations are also going to be hit.

Meanwhile, the private sector banks like ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank, Axis Bank and Kotak Mahindra Bank, are functioning normally today.

Around one million bank employees have gone on strike.

There are about 10,000 bank branches across the state, including 3,000 in and around Bengaluru, with the State Bank of India (SBI) accounting for 1,000 of them after it merged its associate banks like SBM and SBH with it recently. In the case of public sector banks the strike call was known well ahead. Large public sector banks had reported huge losses in the fourth quarter of the fiscal year 2018 owing to mounting bad loans.



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