New Delhi, January 23
The Union Finance Ministry has asked public sector banks to open wage negotiations with the unions to avert a two-day strike just before the presentation of the Union Budget.
Bank unions are upset that there has been no move on the part of the Government for a fresh five-year settlement though revision of wages andservice conditions has become due from November 1, last year. They have now threatened to go on an all-India strike on January 30 and 31, just before the Union Budget which will be tabled in Parliament on February 1.
“In October 2022, workman unions and officers organisations had submittedthe Charter of Demands and requested the IBA to commence negotiations. We find that no steps have been taken by the IBA.Even the preliminary step of seeking a mandate from the Banks to proceed withthe negotiations has not been undertaken by IBA,” noted All India Bank Employees Association general secretary C H Venkatachalam.
Moreover, there are also some “residual issues” which were not resolved at the time of signing the 11th Bipartite Settlement on November 11, 2020 due to the Covid epidemic. It was then agreed that these residual issues wouldbe further discussed but have not been broached so far. The unions are seeking a five-day week, revision of pension for those between 65 and 96 years of age and adequate manpower in branches to cater to the additional business and vacancies due to retirements, deaths etc.
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