Bank unions threaten two-day strike against merger

 Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman with Finance secretary Rajiv Kumar during a press conference to announce the merger of various public sector banks, in New Delhi. PTI File Photo

Four unions of officers of public sector banks (PSBs) announced on Thursday that they will go on a two-day strike from September 25 midnight and an indefinite strike from the second week of November in protest against the proposed merger of 10 PSBs.

In a notice to the chairman of the Indian Banks’ Association, the All India Bank Officers’ Confederation (AIBOC), All India Bank Officers Association, Indian National Bank Officers’ Congress and National Organisation of Bank Officers (NOBO) said they “propose to go on continuous strike from midnight of September 25 to midnight of September 27, 2019 and an indefinite strike from the second week of November”.

The four organisations also demanded expeditious wage revision, introduction of five-day working week, reduction of cash transaction hours and regulated working hours.

Arguing that the earlier merger of PSBs produced negative outcomes such as termination of service and extreme workload on the remaining staff, the four orginsations demanded that the move to merge PSBs be immediately scrapped.

The decision to merge 10 PSBs into four was announced by the Centre on August 30, which also included three Karnataka-based banks.

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