More than 10,00,000 bank workers of India across all categories of employment went on strike on 28th February. The strike was called by the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella body of unions of bank employees. Workers of commercial banks, regional rural banks and cooperative banks participated in the strike.
The striking bank workers are demanding:
- Compensation of employees for extra hours worked following the Note Ban;
- Stringent measures to recover bad loans and fix accountability of top bank executives;
- Criminal action against wilful defaulters;
- Early initiation of next wage revision; and
- Adequate recruitment in all cadres.
The striking bank workers are also opposing the proposed labour reforms of the government and outsourcing of regular jobs.
The bank workers decided to proceed on strike, when the talks with the bank management on 21st February broke down. The Indian Banks Association which represents the management of banks did not agree to the demands of the employees during the conciliation meeting chaired by the Chief Labour Commissioner.
The Central Government, which owns the majority of banks and is responsible for the Note Ban, has made no commitment to compensate officers and other bank employees for the extra-long hours of work they were compelled to perform, and that too under very stressful conditions.
It is also clear that the Central Government is deliberately protecting the wilful defaulters of bank loans. It has been ignoring the consistent demand of the bank workers that the list of the biggest capitalist loan defaulters be made public,
Bank workers have been demanding that the nexus and collusion between large corporate borrowers and the top management of banks must be probed, The chief executive and board chairman of the banks concerned must be held accountable. Instead of acting against loan defaulters and guilty officials, the Modi government has been blaming bank workers for allegedly being involved in currency leaks.
Communist Ghadar Party of India condemns the Central Government for protecting big capitalist robbers of public funds and imposing the burden of their crimes on bank workers and the public at large!
The demands of the bank workers are entirely just.
Communist Ghadar Party calls on all parties and organisations of workers, peasants, women and youth to extend full support to the bank workers’ demands!