The Weekend Leader - Workers, banking industry strike in Maharashtra

Workers, banking industry strike in Maharashtra



The banking and financial sector in Mumbai - India's financial capital - was nearly crippled as over a million bank employees across the country joined the nationwide strike by trade unions on Wednesday, a trade union leader said here.

"All India Bank Officers Association (AIBEA) - the second largest trade union organisation of bank officers - along with other associations observed a strike bringing all the banking operations to near standstill across India," AIBEA vice president V. Utagi said.

"Others associations like BEFI, INBEF AND INBOC, unions in RBI, LIC, NABARD, GIC and IDBI observed the strike," Utagi said.

The strike was to oppose the discriminatory labour policies adopted by the central government in matter of labour law reforms, establishing a "hire and fire" policy and removing 70 percent of the workforce out of the protective umbrella of the existing trade union laws, facilitating contractualisation of regular jobs in the banking industry and other related aspects.

The strike was peaceful in Mumbai and other parts of the state, with several government employees unions also lending support to the agitation, Utagi said.

According to Utagi, transactions of cheques valued at over Rs.10 lakh crore was stuck since Tuesday night, all treasury operations were hit, bills negotiations and inter-bank transactions were also affected.

Some auto-rickshaw and taxi unions also joined the strike though the public bus service in Mumbai and the suburban trains services functioned as usual.

However, state transport services were hit in many parts as the employees joined the agitation, Utagi added. - IANS