New Delhi: Most branches of public sector banks are likely to be shut across India today on account of a strike called by an officers’ union to protest against merger of state-run banks and in support of an immediate wage revision. Most officers, who are part of the All India Bank Officers’ Confederation (AIBOC), are likely to join today’s protest.
Private sector banks, whose employees are not part of this union, continue to function as usual. Public sector banks will be closed for three continuous days from today. All banks will be closed tomorrow as it is the fourth Saturday of the month and Sunday is another weekly holiday. It will be on Monday when all banks will operate as usual before again shutting down for the next two days.
On Tuesday, all banks will be closed for Christmas while on Wednesday, December 26, the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella body of the top nine bank unions, has called for a nationwide strike.
The impact of Wednesday’s strike will be more profound as even private bankers are expected to join the protest. According to reports, about 10 lakh bankers from all banks will take part in the strike.
Traders said the strike impacted trading volumes in foreign exchange and debt markets.
All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA), part of the UFBU, is protesting against the proposed merger of Bank of Baroda, Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank. AIBEA general secretary C.H. Venkatachalam said mergers would kill bank branches while the focus should be on recovering bad loans.
AIBOC joint general secretary Ravinder Gupta said it was demanding a wage revision based on the minimum wages formula without linking to profits or paying capacity.