The public sector bank unions have decided to go on a strike today (March 15) and tomorrow (March 16). This means that these public sector banks will be shut for four days in a row. While Saturday and Sunday was the usual off day for the banks, an additional two days went by due to strike.
During the budget for the year 2021-22, Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman said that the government proposed to privatise Industrial Development Bank of India (IDBI) and two public sector banks in the current financial year. In addition, in the long run only three to four banks will be in the public sector while all other public sector banks will be gradually privatised. At present, the front runner ups for this are Bank of Maharashtra, Central Bank of India and Punjab & Sind Bank among others. This is mainly because these banks have some strong metrics.
Under the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), nine banks unions namely All India Bank Employees Association, National Confederation of Bank Employees, All India Confederation of Bank Officers, All India Bank Officers Association, Indian National Bank Officers Congress, Indian National Bank Employees Federation, National Organisation of Bank Workers, National Organisation of Bank Officers and Bank Employees Federation of India, are representing employees of 12 public sector banks, old generation private sector banks, foreign banks and regional rural banks.
Around 10 lakh bank employees and officers working in about one lakh Bank branches will join the strike.
Impact on customers
Bank authorities usually ensure that ATMs do not run dry on such occasions but there were times when ATM services were hit due to strike. While bank level activities will be hit like cheque transfer, withdrawal of cash from the cash counter, cash deposits among other services, online transactions will not be hit during this time. Anyone can undertake online services anytime.
Some bank branches that will be closed due to strike are:
State Bank of India
Indian Overseas Bank
Punjab National Bank
Union Bank of India
Central Bank of India
Bank of Baroda
Punjab & Sind Bank
Bank of Maharashtra
Karnataka Bank Ltd