Banking services could be affected next week as two bank unions have warned they will go on a 24-hour long strike on October 22 to protest against the recent bank mergers, falling deposit rates and a call for job security.
The two unions – the All India Bank Employees’ Association (AIBEA) and the Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI) – have informed the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) through a notice that they will go on strike from 6 a.m. on October 22 to 6 a.m. on October 23.
State Bank of India has already said the impact would be minimal as most of its employees are not members of the participating unions.
“The membership of our bank employees in unions participating in the strike is very few, so the impact of the strike on our operation will be minimal,” SBI said in the notice. It further said the loss from the proposed strike cannot be quantified as of now.
Other banks such as Bank of Maharashtra and Syndicate Bank have, however, expressed concern over providing customer services.
“The bank is taking necessary steps tor smooth functioning of branches on the proposed strike day. However in the event the strike materialises, the functioning of the branches/offices may be impacted,” Syndicate Bank said in a notice to stock exchanges.
Bank of Baroda, in a filing with the exchanges, said: “The Bank is taking necessary steps for the smooth functioning of bank’s branches on the day of the strike, in the event the strike materialises, the functioning of the branches may be affected/paralysed.”
AIBEA and BEFI said they are opposing outsourcing of regular and perennial nature of banking jobs, and privatisation of banking industry while demanding adequate recruitment of clerical and sub-staff and stringent steps for recovery of mounting bad loans.
Last month, the officers’ unions had called a two-day all India bank strike on September 26 and 27 that was later withdrawn on government intervention.