Bhubaneswar: Nationalized banks across the country will remain closed for three consecutive days from Friday. On January 31 and February 1, the bank workers are on a two-day strike and the third day will be closed due to Sunday. Bankers have said that if their demands are not met then there will be a strike again from March 11 to 13 and even then if the demands are not met then we will start an indefinite agitation from April 1.
All the bank workers involved in today’s strike staged agitation against their demands in front of their respective branches. Locks have been hanging in banks involved in the strike since early this morning. On the other hand, common people are facing problems due to the strike in the Capital City.
The main demands of the bankers include 20% increase in total salary under salary revision, five-day banking work, collection of special allowance in basic pay, abolition of new pension scheme, increase in pension, improvement in family pension, fixation of staff welfare fund, operating profit Income tax exemption on dividends received on retirement, equal pay for contract workers in lieu of equal work.
“Unfortunately, the IBA did not make any offer on wage increase until May 2018 when their very meagre offer of 2 % increase was offered. After series of discussions in the last 30 months, the IBA has improved their offer only to a hike of 12.250/0 while even in the last settlement, the Government cleared a hike of 150/0,” the protesting bank employees said.
“During the recent period the prices have gone up steeply and the workload on the banking workforce has also gone up enormously. Hence bank staffs expect a fair and reasonable hike in wages in the current settlement,” the protesting bank employees said.