Bank employees unhappy with consolidation in the industry
By Neelima Shankar
Nov 13, 2009
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Bank employees are unhappy with the consolidation in the industry. Around 4 lakh officers and employees have decided to go on a strike on 16th December to protest against the proposed merger of State bank of Indore with its parent company, State bank of India and other possible mergers in the industry.

The All India Bank Employees' Association (AIBEA) and the All India Bank Officers' Association (AIBOA) have called for a strike.

Mr C.H. Venkatachalam, General Secretary of AIBEA, said, "I had deferred the earlier strike call after an assurance by the SBI and State Bank of Indore management that unions will be consulted before consolidation. Now they are proceeding with the closure of State Bank of Indore without talking to us. They are going back on the commitment given before the Deputy Chief Labour Commissioner."

In early July, when bank unions had called for a strike, the deputy commissioner in delhi had held a meeting. In the meeting, the management was advised not to approach RBI and government on the merger issue. However, on October 31, the board of State Bank of Indore approved its acquisition by State bank of India. SBI has also decided on the share swap ratio. The proposal awaits a final decision by the centre.

OP Bhatt, the Chairman and Managing Director is of the opinion that India's banking system needs consolidation in order to meet the funding requirements of a globalizing Indian Industry. He had said that India needed at least four banks of the size of SBI to meet global standards.


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