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PSB unions call for two-day bank strike to protest against 'meagre' wage hike

PSB unions call for two-day bank strike to protest against 'meagre' wage hike

The employees of public sector banks will go on a two-day strike from May 30-31 to protest a 'meagre' 2 per cent wage hike offered by the Indian Banks' Association (IBA).

The employees of public sector banks will go on a two-day strike from May 30-31 to protest against a 'meagre' 2 per cent wage hike offered by the Indian Banks' Association (IBA). The nationwide strike is likely to affect the normal banking operations of several state-run lenders.

The pan-India strike has been called by United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), which is an umbrella body of bank unions including All India Bank Officers' Confederation (AIBOC), National Confederation of Bank Employees (NCBE), All India Bank Officers Association (AIBOA) and Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI).

Earlier, SBI had said its services may be impacted on May 30 and May 31 if the proposed strike by various bank employees unions take place. Pressing for various demands, the unions have opposed IBAs delay in resolving a charter of demands, governments casual approach to wage revision for bank employees, a meagre offer of 2 per cent hike in wage revision.

"All India State Bank Officers Federation and All India State Bank of India Staff Federation are members of UFBU. Thus, it is likely that our bank will also be impacted to some extent by the said strike calls," SBI had said in a regulatory filing.

UFBU has demanded an expeditious and early wage revision settlement, adequate increase in salary and improvement in other service conditions and wage revision settlement to include all officers up to scale VII.

Several others banks, including Bank of Baroda, Canara Bank and Punjab and Sind Bank (PSB), have also said that their services and functioning are likely to be impacted if the strike takes place.

In the wage negotiation meeting held on May 5, 2018, IBA made a propositions to offer 2 per cent hike in the wage bill cost as on March 31, 2017. It also maintained that the negotiations on officers demands would be restricted up to scale III officers only.

"It is only because of provisions towards NPA that banks have booked losses, and for this, bank employees are not responsible," United Forum of Bank Unions' convener Devidas Tuljapurkar said.

Tuljapurkar told reporters here. He said in the last two-three years, bank employees have worked tirelessly for implementation of government initiatives such as Jan-Dhan, demonetisation, Mudra and Atal Pension Yojana, among others.

"This has resulted into huge increase in their workloads," he said.

In the last wage settlement, which was for the period November 1, 2012 to October 31, 2017, IBA had give a wage hike of 15 per cent.

with PTI inputs