Banks on strike: Banking services to hit as employees go on 2-day strike
Employees of Canara Bank protesting in Lucknow on MondayImage source: Twitter/@rajeshroxu

Banks on strike: Banking services to hit as employees go on 2-day strike

About 10 lakh bank employees and officers are to participate in the strike called by the United Forum of Bank Unions

New Delhi: Banking services are likely to be affected around India as lakhs of bank employees went on a two-day strike from today (Monday) protesting the privatisation of two public sector banks and retrograde banking reforms.

About 10 lakh bank employees and officers are to participate in the strike called by the United Forum of Bank Unions, an umbrella body of nine associations and groups. The strike had been called after the conciliation meeting held between the bank unions and the Union Finance Ministry on March 4, 9 and 10 failed. Bank unions have been asking government to reconsider its decision of privatise the government banks, which may also lead to job losses.

In the Union Budget presented last month, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced the privatisation of two public sector banks (PSBs) as part of its disinvestment plan. The government has already privatised IDBI Bank by selling its majority stake in the lender to LIC in 2019 and merged 14 public sector banks in the last four years.

The services impacted include deposits and withdrawals at branches, loan approvals and cheque clearance. However, many ATMs continue to function normally. Most of the banks, including the State Bank of India (SBI), have told their customers that its normal services may be impacted at offices and branches but they were taking steps to certify smooth functioning of certain other services.

On the other side, services at private banks such as ICICI, HDFC, Kotak, IndusInd and more remain unaffected by the strike. Private banks fear that their operations may also hit of striking unions push for closure at some of their branches.

(With inputs from IANS)

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