Bank unions call strike on February 7


Kolkata, January 21: Citing shortage of cash supply to banks due to demonetisation, besides problems related to recovery of bad loans, bank employees’ and officers’ unions on Friday called for an all-India strike on February 7.

In a joint statement, major bank unions including the All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA), All India Bank Officers Association (AIBOA) and the Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI) have said that ever since November 8 when the central government announced demonetisation scheme, the entire banking sector has plunged in turmoil.

But even now we find that there is acute shortage of cash supply to the banks with the result that bank branches are not able to honour even the restricted payments… Most of the ATMs are still non-functional and even where they are functioning, there is no cash to dispense,” the unions said.

Demanding dire need of transparency in supply of cash to banks after demonetisation, BEFI’s General Secretary Pradip Biswas said, “While most of our banks are still suffering from short supply of cash, one cannot understand how few private banks get uninterrupted cash supply!”

Amish severe cash crunch post noteban, snarling queues remained a daily affair outside banks and ATMs. While banks were cash starved, new currency notes in big numbers were found by ED and police.

But there is no answer as to how such huge cash has gone out of the banks,” said AIBEA’s General Secretary C.H. Venkatachalam.

Besides demonetisation, the unions also highlighted other important issues. The unions alleged that when the ordinary people are facing cash problems “in the name of curbing black money”, the big defaulters of bank loans are getting “scot-free”.

“No action is being taken against the increasing menace of huge bad loans in the banks except provisions from profits, write-offs and desperate sale of NPAs (non-performing assets),” said AIBOA General Secretary S. Nagarajan.

Wefornews Bureau

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