Ashish Handa, a relationship manager at the Sector 8 HDFC branch in Panchkula, heaved a sigh of relief on Monday when the banks went on holiday after working for close to 14 hours for five consecutive days.
“I saw my infant son on Sunday after many days. My day used to start at 8am and end at 11pm,” he said. On November 9, leaves of their staff were cancelled. “For five days, I couldn’t eat properly. I used to hurriedly take lunch on my car’s bonnet in 5-10 minutes. People tend to argue and my job was to pacify them. ”
Families share burden
When Arun Sikka, deputy manager at the State Bank of India’s (SBI) Sector 9 branch,was sent to deal with customers at the Phase 3B2 branch in SAS Nagar on November 12, he was surprised to see his wife and daughter managing long queues outside the bank. “There was a massive rush outside the bank and crowd was getting out of control. My wife was passing through the bank and when she noticed that the rush was going out of control, she called my daughter and they both managed the queues till late evening.”
‘We worked till 4 am’
“Bank employees did not lose their cool and many worked till late nights. There were employees who did not go home for the last 3-4 days as they were working till 3-4am,” said Deepak Sharma, state secretary, All India Bank Officers Confedration.
Extended hours: Banker wives bank on hubbies
SAS Nagar: With husbands and mothers stepping in to take care of the house, female bankers stand up to the call of duty with extended working hours owing to demonetisation of `500 and `1000 notes.
The dependency on the maids has increased and in case the maids, do not turn up, take-outs are filling the meal time. There were few women who even had to work with running fever while for some working mothers, extended hours meant extension of crèche hours for their children.
Female bankers are staying late in office along with other staff and have been working without offs since November 8 when Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced the demonetisation of `500 and `1000 notes.
“I am reaching home at 10pm and at times, even past midnight. So, my husband is taking care and managing the house. If the maid does not turn up, it is pizza time,” said Meena Ojha, a senior manager of Oriental Bank of Commerce (OBC) in Sector 34, Chandigarh.
Renu Kalia, another senior manager at OBC in SAS Nagar, said, “Without family support, working late till night is not possible. My children are grown up, so things are better.”
“I had mild fever but when your duty calls, one has to respond and other things have to take a back seat. I cannot shy away from responsibility, so I popped in medicines to meet the call of duty,” said another manager of Bank of Baroda in SAS Nagar, who did not wish to be named.
Manager of IDBI Bank, Meenakshi Arora, said, “We made sure that female staff going home late is accompanied by male staff. We are trying to share the burden of female colleagues so that their children do not suffer.”