Four bank unions have threatened to go on a two-day strike from September 26 to protest against the consolidation of 10 state-run banks into four. Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman had announced this consolidation on August 30. The government's move is aimed at transforming state-owned lenders into global-sized banks.
Public sector banks across the nation will go on strike from midnight of September 25 to midnight of September 27 to protest merger and amalgamation in the banking sector by the Union government and other demands of employees, Deepal Kumar Sharma, general secretary of AIBOC (Chandigarh), told PTI.
All India Bank Officers' Association (AIBOA), All India Bank Officers' Confederation (AIBOC), National Organisation of Bank Officers (NOBO), Indian National Bank Officers' Congress (INBOC) will participate in the two-day strike.
The nationalised banks will further observe indefinite strike from the second week of November to press for their demands, another union leader told PTI.
The unions are also looking for the immediate introduction of a five working day in a full week, regulated working hours and reduction of cash transaction hours. They have also asked to halt undue interference in the existing procedure of vigilance cases by outside agencies, reduction of service charges for consumers, scrapping of NPS, settlement of issues about retirees, adequate recruitment, and harassing officers under specious plea of non-performance.
According to the consolidation exercise, United Bank of India and Oriental Bank of Commerce are to be merged with Punjab National Bank, making the proposed entity the second largest public sector bank (PSB).
Syndicate Bank is to be merged with Canara Bank. Allahabad Bank will be merged with Indian Bank. Andhra Bank will be amalgamated with Corporation Bank and Union Bank of India.
This would be the second round of consolidation among state-run banks. Earlier this year, SBI had absorbed its five associate banks and the Bharatiya Mahila Bank to form the biggest pub sector lender. In another merger, Bank of Baroda had taken over Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank.
(With PTI inputs)
(Edited by Vivek Dubey)