Banking operations hit due to employees’ strike

Bank employees staging protest near Rail Head Complex in Jammu on Tuesday. -Excelsior/ Rakesh
Bank employees staging protest near Rail Head Complex in Jammu on Tuesday. -Excelsior/ Rakesh

Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU/ SRINAGAR, Aug 22: The banking operations in various Nationalized Banks, including State Bank of India and Punjab National Bank was affected with the strike of Bank employees  across the J&K State today.
The call for the strike was given by All India Bank Employees Association and All India Bank Officers Association. The Bank employees  belonging to all the Nationalized Banks in the State also held protest demonstrations.
The Bank employees from PNB, Canara Bank  and others, under the banner of Jammu Province Bank Employees Federation, observed complete strike in Jammu city. The strike was total across all banks, as a result of which all the banks in the region were closed. The employees also held protest demonstration in support of their demands.
General secretary of the Federation Arun Kumar Gupta, flanked by Ashwani Pardhan (PNBOA)  also addressed the gathering and spoke to the media on this occasion.
Gupta voiced his Association’s  opposition to Government’s broad policies regarding the banking sector, which included proposed  mergers of many a banks which may lead to their eventual privatization. He said such retrograde steps will prove disastrous for the banking industry. He also opposed the FRDI Bill and registered his opposition to Bank Board Bureau. He also reiterated general demand of entire bank employee’s fraternity for proper legislation which will make willful default of bank loans a criminal offence.
Ashwani Pradhan stressed the need of proper implementation of the recommendations of Parliamentary Committee on recovery of NPA’s. He opposed the concept of writing off bad loans.
Officers and employees of State Bank of India, Public Sector Banks, Regional Rural Banks etc, under the banner of United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) comprising of nine officers associations  and workmen unions observed strike and held protest demonstration at SBI Administrative office (Rail Head), near Bahu Palza here today. Satish Khajuria, president AIBOC  and Sham Lal Hans general secretary NCBE JK were leading the protest. The employees were shouting slogans in support of their demands and also against Govt.
They were opposing privatization of Public Sector Banks, merger plans of Govt, demanding withdrawal of FRDI Bill  and abolition of Bank Board Bureau. They were also opposing increase in service charges in the name of GST and strongly opposing putting burden of Corporate NPAs on the bank customers by hiking charges.
Reports from Srinagar said that banking operations came to a grinding halt in Public Sector Banks across Kashmir due to day long strike call given by United Forum of Bank Unions, against the Centre’s proposed consolidation move besides other demands. However, the private sector banks including JK Bank, ICICI and HDFC Bank were functioning normally.
Meanwhile, Northern Zone Insurance Employees  Association Srinagar Division (J&K) has fully supported the strike of the bank employees.


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