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Bank strike on October 22 against merger of PSBs; operations to be hit

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New Delhi, Oct 21: A nation-wide protest by Public sector banks unions over the merger of public sector banks is likely to affect operations on October 22 (Tuesday).

The bodies that have called the strike are All India Bank Employee Association (AIBEA), the Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI)and the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC).

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"We note that All India Bank Employees Association and Bank Employees Federation of India have jointly given the call for all India bank strike on October 22, against the recent decision of the government to merge 10 public sector banks into four banks thus, deciding to close down six important nationalised banks," an AITUC statement said.

The AITUC termed the government's decision as most unfortunate and totally unwarranted.

"AIBEA and BEFI have called for an all India strike of its members on October 22, in support of their demands. In the event the strike materialises, the normal functioning of the bank may get affected," Oriental Bank of Commerce said in the regulatory filing on Saturday.

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The functioning of its branches/offices may be "affected/paralyzed" due to the proposed strike, " Bank of Baroda said

"This is to inform that All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) have given a call for one day strike on 22.10.2019 in support of their various demands and issues. The above strike is at the industry level and not at bank-level issue," Bank of Maharashtra had said earlier.

However, State Bank of India (SBI) has said that the strike will have a minimum impact on its branches as most of its employees are not part of these unions.

The bank unions are also pressing for banking reforms, recovery of bad loans, action against defaulters.

The government IN August unveiled a mega plan to merge 10 public sector banks into four as part of plans to create fewer and stronger global-sized lenders as it looks to boost economic growth from a five-year low.

Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman announced four new sets of mergers Punjab National Bank, Oriental Bank of Commerce and United Bank of India will combine to form the nation's second-largest lender; Canara Bank and Syndicate Bank will merge; Union Bank of India will amalgamate with Andhra Bank and Corporation Bank; and Indian Bank will merge with Allahabad Bank.

Last year, the government had merged Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank with Bank of Baroda, creating the third-largest bank by loans in the country.

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