Bank employees to go on strike on Wednesday
Moneylife Digital Team 11 November 2014
The one-day nationwide strike by bank employees would also affect clearing of about 10 crore cheques worth Rs7.40 lakh crores across the country 
 
Banking operations, including clearing of cheques, across the country are likely to be hit Wednesday as around 10 lakh employees went on a one-day nationwide strike over wage revision settlement and ongoing banking sector reforms.
 
United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), the umbrella organisation of five employee unions and four officer unions of state-run banks in the country, had given the call for strike on 12th November. 
 
"In the negotiations held Tuesday, the Indian Banks' Association (IBA) stuck to their earlier stand of 11%, despite the flexibility of United Forum of Bank Unions (UBFU) in scaling down the demand to 23%. Consequently, the conciliation also ended in stalemate. Hence, strike on 12th November and relay strike in December stands," said CH Venkatachalam, general Secretary, All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA).
 
Due to the strike, banking transactions, including clearing operations, would be paralysed across the country. While bank branches may remain closed at several places, normal banking services are also likely to be disrupted.
 
Market dealers too are bracing for low volumes on Wednesday following a nationwide strike call given by bank unions. The strike is expected to hit all state-run banks, and also some private lenders, and could also impact market functions such as trade settlements to some extent.
 
UFBU had called for a strike on 20-21 January this year. At that time, the IBA increased its offer to 9.5% from 5% with a promise to improve it further. However, during the discussions on 27th January, the IBA increased its offer by just 0.5% to 10%, which was rejected by UFBU representatives. The Union has been seeking an increase of 30% as their wage revision is pending since November 2012.
 
According to UFBU, the last wage settlement in the banking sector expired in October 2012 and hence a revised settlement was due from November 2012.
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