Monday, February 27, 2012

Public Sector Banks Strike on Feb 28

Twenty two Public Sector Banks operational in Jammu and Kashmir are most likely to be closed on February 28, 2012 due to a strike call given by employees’ unions to get their long pending demands addressed.National Confederation of Bank Employees, Deputy General Sectary for J&K state,Mustaq Ahmad Bhat told JK News that it is an all India level strike call to get the genuine demands of the clerical and other lower staff addressed. “Employees of Public Sector Banks here too would observe the strike,” Bhat confirms.
Over one thousand five hundred employees of Public Sector Banks in J&K would go on strike on coming Tuesday. While at all India level more than 8,00,000 employees and officers affiliated with these unions are expected to participate in the strike. Across India there are about 87,000 branches of public sector banks, which control about 75 per cent of banking business.

Bankers expect the strike would several affected the operations of the public sector banks here particularly in the rural areas of the state. “Clearings and other inter banks operations would be hampered because of the strike. Particularly the customers of these banks would be the worst hit in the strike,” Sovais Shafi, an officer in a private sector bank here said.

The banks that would go on strike include: State Bank of India, Punjab National Bank, Central Bank of India, Union Bank of India, Bank of Baroda, Bank of India and others.

The strike is against the privatization of Public Sector Banks and reduction of government’s equity in Public Sector Banks. “Against allowing unrestricted entry of foreign capital in banking sector, issuance of licenses to industrial houses to start their own banks,” Bhat said.

While stressing on the two demands Bhat said that employees of the banks demand implementation of uniform scheme for house building loan, vehicles loan, and festival advances to all bank staff. “Implementation of 5 days banking,” Bhat added.

The bank employees are also demand to scarp Khandelwal Committee recommendations.The committee had suggested a slew of measures, including outsourcing more and more non-core activities in a time-bound manner. The panel had also recommended raising the standard of recruitment, including the methodology and content for tests, besides making the testing of computer skills mandatory for both officers and clerks.“Seven bank unions of nine have given strike call for stringent and effective measures to recover bad loans of banks and unilateral imposition of Khandelwal committee recommendations," All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) General Secretary C H Venkatachalam on record has said.

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