Banking serivces in the county have been hit hard following the two-day nationwide strike of Public Sector Banks. The call for strike on March 15 and 16 (today and tommorrow) had been given by the United Forum of Bank Union (UFBU), an umbrella body of nine bank unions, against privatisation of Public Sector Banks and retrograde banking reforms. Over 10 lakh bank employees and officers will participate in the strike.
All nine banks unions – All India Bank Officers’ Confederation (AIBOC), All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA), National Confederation of Bank Employees (NCBE), All India Bank Officers’ Confederation (AIBOC), Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI), Indian National Bank Employees Federation (INBEF), Indian National Bank Officers’ Congress (INBOC) and National Organisation of Bank Officers (NOBO) and the National Organisation of Bank Workers (NOBW) have taken part in the strike.
Services such as deposits and withdrawal at branches, cheque clearance, and loan approvals would be affected due to the strike. Banks were already closed on March 13 (second Saturday) and March 14 (Sunday), leading to a four-day break in regular banking operations. Services such as deposits and withdrawal at branches, cheque clearance and loan approvals have been severely affected due to the strike.
The strike comes after Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman’s Budget announcement where she announced the privatisation of two public sector banks (apart from IDBI Bank) as part of the government’s disinvestment drive to generate Rs. 1.75 lakh crore. The strike has found support from National Confederation of Officers’ Associations (NCOA),), which represents around 2.5 Lakh Executives of PSUs, All India Defence Employees Federation (AIDEF), apart from other trade unions.
Apart from bank unions, all the unions in four General Insurance Companies will be on strike on March 17. All the unions in LIC are on strike on March 18, while unions of four insurance companies have called for a strike against the privatisation of public companies.