PUNE: About 10 lakh bank officials and employees from across the country observed a day-long strike on Tuesday to oppose the anti-people policies of the government. While the strike was observed successfully, citizens were caught unawares leading to problems in payments and transactions during the day.
Bank officials had called for the strike to oppose privatisation and consolidation measures announced by the government in light of the mounting Non-Performing Assets (NPA). Speaking to Sakal Times, Convener of Maharashtra State Bank Employees Federation Devidas Tuljapurkar said, “The government is putting the burden of the rising NPAs on the common man by increasing service tax on financial services and reducing interest on saving bank accounts instead of bringing the defaulting corporates to heel. We are opposing these anti-people policies of the government.”
Lots of Punekars were rendered helpless on the strike day as they could not carry out transactions leading to defaults in payments. “We had to make certain payments, make deposits and also receive payments through net-banking.
However, work during the day suffered and we also incurred losses as the banks remained nonoperational on Tuesday,” said local trader Prasanna Parmar.
The strike was observed by all public sector banks, old private sector banks and regional rural banks under the banner of United Forum of Bank Unions (UFFU).
Another city-based businessman reflected Parmar’s sentiments and said that work was hindered due to the strike and alternate provisions had to be made for payments that were due. Tuljapurkar has further hinted at the possibility of further strikes in the end of October and the beginning of November in case the government does not change its stand and continues to put the burden of NPAs on the common man.