Big fight brewing at IDBI between employees union and management over strike call
Moneylife Digital Team 23 March 2016
While the United Platform of IDBI Bank Unions have given a call for three-day strike from 28th March, the Bank management issued a circular asking employees to work on 26th March, the declared holiday being fourth Saturday and termed the strike call as illegal
 
Even as IDBI Bank employees' unions are preparing for their four-day countrywide strike from 28th to 31st March 2016 to oppose the government's move to dilute its stake in the bank, the management has issued a circular calling the strike as illegal. According to reports, the bank management has even issued notice to keep all braches open on 26th March, which is fourth Saturday of the month when all banks remain closed.
 
In a regulatory filing, IDBI Bank said, "A section of employees of the Bank have served a Notice of Strike from 28th to 31st March 2016. If the strike materialises, normal banking services may be affected. In order to minimise the inconvenience to customers, the Bank has decided to keep all its offices open on 26 March 2016. Further, on the days of strike, if the same materialises, services through alternate delivery channels viz. ATMs, internet banking, mobile banking etc., will remain available as usual."
 
AV Vitthal Koteshwar Rao, convenor of the United Platform of IDBI Bank unions, and his team are meeting bank employees across the country to make the strike successful. When Rao and his team reached the corporate banking group (CBG) branch to address employees, the Chief General Manager called up the police and also locked his cabin. Later, during the discussion with four officers, he (the CGM) reportedly said he had not done anything illegal (by calling police) and all these things are under the executive director (ED) for human resources (HR). However, this cannot be verified.
 
 
During his talk with employees, Rao told them not to get distracted by the circular (for calling the strike as illegal) as every time the unions have given a call, the management had called it as illegal only. "Our strike for 28th to 31 March 2016 is final and until we receive any communication from our general secretary, we will not roll back the call," Rao said.
 
Some employees fear that if they decide to join the strike, then they may be suspended. But the unions are assuring them that the suspension would be revoked in a few working days. Rao is meeting Jayant Sinha, state minister for finance in a day or two and is likely to discuss the issues of employee suspension and the strike call.
 
The union leaders are also advising employees to follow certain rules during the strike. This includes not obstructing any person from entering or leaving the bank branch, not to demonstrate in branch premises, and not to say anything against the bank to customers. These three points are termed as punishable under Section 36AD of the Banking Regulation Act, 1949.  
 
Last month, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced that the government, which holds 80% stake in IDBI, proposes to reduce its equity in IDBI Bank to below 50%. "The process of transformation of IDBI Bank has already started. Government will take it forward and also consider the option of reducing its stake to below 50%," Jaitley told the parliament.
 
In another development, Singapore government owned Temasek Holdings Pvt Ltd and General Insurance Corp of India (GIC) are interested in buying a stake in IDBI, says a report quoting an official from Indian government. Moreover, shareholders of IDBI Bank have given their permission to raise Rs1,500 crore via share issue to Life Insurance Corp of India (LIC), say another report.
 
Meanwhile, according to reports, International Finance Corporation (IFC), a member of the World Bank Group, has completed due diligence of IDBI Bank on Friday. In addition, the Bank Board has approved in-principle, the rupee bond issuance of up to Rs20,000 crore to be borrowed in one or more tranches comprising of Senior / Infrastructure Bonds, Basel III compliant Tier II,  Additional Tier I Bonds by way of private placement or public issue during FY2016-17 or during one year from the date of passing of the special resolution by shareholders at the ensuing annual general meeting (AGM) of the Bank.
Comments
Suketu Shah
8 years ago
NaMo shd sell this bank off first before all customers leave the bank.
TIHARwale
8 years ago
Employees of IDBI should realise that they are a bunch of fools who didn't protest when corrupt officials were disbursing loans to a KFA when the borrower had already ceased to operate. So at this junction the strike will not gain public sympathy rather only attract derision. Also when all other PSBs are working the strike by IDBI will have no impact staff losing salary for being on strike. So attend to work, Govt will not bring down the stake below 51% as it has not done so far in any other PSB
Ramesh Poapt
8 years ago
crucial matter for all concerned!
ML-pl track the same and update us with the development,as the same will have multiple serious impact!
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