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Bank services paralysed

FOLLOWING nationwide strike, bank services came to a grinding halt as employees of most public sector banks stayed away from their work in eastern Uttar Pradesh, including Varanasi, Mirzapur, Chandauli, Bhadohi, Ballia, Mau and Ghazipur, on Friday to register their protest against outsourcing and other issues. The strike call was given by AIBEA, Bank Employees Federation of India and All-India Bank Officers? Association while national Confederation of Bank Employees was extending its moral support to strike.
None | By HT Correspondent, Varanasi
PUBLISHED ON JUL 29, 2006 12:06 AM IST

FOLLOWING nationwide strike, bank services came to a grinding halt as employees of most public sector banks stayed away from their work in eastern Uttar Pradesh, including Varanasi, Mirzapur, Chandauli, Bhadohi, Ballia, Mau and Ghazipur, on Friday to register their protest against outsourcing and other issues.

The strike call was given by AIBEA, Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI) and All-India Bank Officers’ Association (AIBOA) while national Confederation of Bank Employees was extending its moral support to strike.

President of Uttar Pradesh Bank Employees’ Association, Ram Vishnu Chaubey claimed that transaction worth crores of rupees were affected in eastern Uttar Pradesh due to strike.

He claimed that since the work of clearing house was suspended today, about 16,000 cheques worth Rs 150 crore were not cleared in Varanasi alone. He also claimed that though the branches of State Bank of India, Bank of Baroda and Indian Overseas Bank were open today but 85 per cent banking services were adversely affected due to suspension of clearing house.

The agitated employees were demanding withdrawal of RBI circular on outsourcing of banking services, withdrawal of RBI decision on outsourcing of clearing operation, withdrawal of amendment to Section 12 (2) of the Banking Regulation Act on removal of ceiling on voting rights in banks, one more option for pension etc.           

As per reports, more than 200 branches of different nationalised banks excluding State Bank of India were closed and all banking works, including clearance, were badly affected today.  A massive demonstration was held outside the regional office of Punjab National Bank at Cantonment area in Varanasi.

District secretary of Punjab National Bank Staff Association and leader of Uttar Pradesh Bank Employees’ Union Sanjay Sharma, who was leading demonstration at Regional Office, said that outsourcing of banking services to private parties could pose threat to the secrecy of bank customers.

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