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Bank employees to strike against outsourcing

Written by: Staff
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Bhopal, Apr 15 (UNI) After the nation-wide strike by SBI employees for pension hike, bank employees across the country are planning a major agitation against outsourcing in banks.

Now, the bank employees are planning united action against outsourcing the work of clearing houses and handing over its assets to a private agency at book value, according to Madhya Pradesh Bank Employees Association General Secretary V K Sharma.

A meeting of United Forum of Bank Unions held at Chennai has decided to unleash a national campaign and agitation ''against the increasing attempts of the government and Reserve Bank of India to outsource the banking operations,'' Mr Sharma said.

At present, 1100 clearing houses at various centres, conducted by RBI, State Bank of India and some other commercial banks, are entrusted with clearing the cheques issued by customers on various banks. Now the RBI has decided that the clearing houses will be handed over to a proposed private limited company ''National Payment Corporation of India''.

''Banks are dealing with the accounts of customers in total secrecy and handing over the operations to a private company will be undesirable. Throwing open banking operations to private agencies will be disastrous,'' All India Bank Employees Association General Secretary C H Venkatachalam said in a statement.

The RBI has instructed the banks that normal banking activities like opening of accounts, payment of cash to customers' accounts, withdrawal of cash, remittances and sanction of loan to small borrowers can be outsourced and handed over to private corporate agencies on commission basis. Nearly 70 percent of the employees will become jobless if this outsourcing is done, he added.

UNI SP SS KN1457

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