10 Lakh+ Govt Bank Employees Threaten More Strikes Against Privatization; Will Govt Listen?
On March 15 and 16, about 10 million bank employees participating from nearly 9 bank unions conducted a two-day bank strike, in response to the government’s decision of privatizing two more public sector banks besides IDBI bank.
Trak.in has exclusively covered every detail related to this.
Heavy losses were incurred due to the two day bank strike, with about Rs 16,500 crore affected due to clearance of cheques and payment instruments only on the first day of the strike.
Bank unions have now come forward and informed that if the government does not take back its decision on privatising 2 more public sector banks, it will continue to hold more strikes.
This comes after the general council meeting of the All India Bank Employees’ Association (AIBEA) on Sunday.
Bank Unions Threaten to Conduct More Strikes
FM Niramala Sitharaman announced in the Union Budget speech on February 1 that the government will conduct privatisation of two more public sector banks besides IDBI Bank, in the financial year 2022.
This privatization process will be a part of the government’s disinvestment drive of Rs 1.75 lakh crore.
On Sunday, the members participating in the general council meeting of the All India Bank Employees’ Association informed that they were ‘asked to intensify their agitation’.
“The general council meeting has called upon all our unions and members all over the country to continue the struggle against bank privatization, get ready for prolonged strikes and intensify our campaign to defend public sector banking and defeat attempts of privatization”, stated the union.
Going a step forward, these bank unions have also started to engage with customers and the public, informing their side of the ill-effect of privatisation.
AIBEA added, “Public sector banks provide permanent jobs for the educated youth. But we know the plight of the employees working in the new private banks where job security is totally absent. Fair wages are denied. Trade union rights are non-existent. Thus, privatization of banks will enslave the young employees into these adverse conditions.”
Two-Day Bank Strike Conducted in March
The bank union body United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), which is an umbrella body of nine bank unions, called for a two day nationwide strike on March 15 and 16, inviting other bank unions and employees.
About 10 lakh bank employees and officers participated in this strike, affecting the banking services.
The two-day strike led to a four-day bank break, which was in consequence to a second Saturday (no working day) and Sunday.
Services like deposits and withdrawal at branches, cheque clearance, and loan approvals were seen to have more effect than others during the strike.