PSBs employees go on strike in North; East to follow tomorrow

PSBs employees go on strike in North; East to follow tomorrow

Continuing their four-day relay strike to press for wage hike, public sector bank (PSB) employees in Northern region went off work today while their counterparts in East India will follow suit tomorrow.

All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) General Secretary C H Venkatachalam claimed that about 30,000 branches of PSU banks were closed in North India and 3 lakh employees took part in the strike.

However, private sector banks continued to function normally in 10 states and one Union Territory of Chandigarh where PSBs' employees went on strike.

Cheque clearances and deposit and withdrawal from branches in many states including Haryana, Jammu & Kashmir, Madhya Pradesh, New Delhi, Punjab, Uttar Pradesh and Rajasthan were affected.

"Since the conciliation meeting with Indian Banks' Association failed to reach a conclusion, the strike was forced upon us," United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) Convener M V Murali told PTI. UFBU is the umbrella organisation of nine bank employees and officer unions.

"We have scaled down our demand from 25 per cent to 23 per cent (wage hike), but IBA is not yielding. It has been sticking to its earlier offer of 11 per cent which is not enough," Ashwini Rana, General Secretary of National Organisation of Bank Workers, said. As part of four-day relay strike to press for wage hike and other demands, public sector bank employees will go on strike in eastern region tomorrow. Normal banking operations in the states of West Bengal, Assam, Bihar and Jharkhand would be affected due to the strike. Some of the banks have already informed their customers about inconvenience due to the strike. Subsequently, there would be strike on December 5 by the western zone.This is the second strike by bank employees in less than 30 days. The last strike was on November 12.

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