Guwahati: Banking services including cheque clearance across the country got affected on Monday as bankers have gone on a nationwide strike to protest against the proposed privatisation of two state-owned lenders.
However, branches of private-sector lenders like ICICI Bank, HDFC Bank and Axis Bank are open as they are not part of the strike.
Banks will be closed for two-day strike on March 15 (Monday) and March 16 (Tuesday), while the previous two days March 13 was a second saturday while March 14 is a Sunday. Thus, to sum it up, banks will remain closed for four days in a row.
Bankers under the aegis of the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella body of nine unions, are going on a strike call on March 15 and 16. About 10 lakh bank employees and officers of the banks will participate in the strike.
In the Union Budget presented last month, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman had announced the privatisation of two public sector banks (PSBs) as part of the government’s disinvestment plan.
According to All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) general secretary CH Venkatachalam, services at branch level; cheque clearance; and government transactions have been affected. Besides, money markets and stock markets are also going to face problems as payments would be impacted, he told news agency PTI.
Members of UFBU include All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA), All India Bank Officers’ Confederation (AIBOC), National Confederation of Bank Employees (NCBE), All India Bank Officers’ Association (AIBOA) and Bank Employees Confederation of India (BEFI)
Others are the Indian National Bank Employees Federation (INBEF), Indian National Bank Officers Congress (INBOC), National Organisation of Bank Workers (NOBW) and National Organisation of Bank Officers (NOBO).