Bank unions in Manipur to join nationwide bank strike on March 15 and 16

United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU) Manipur state on Wednesday announced to join the proposed two-day nationwide strike opposing privatisation of banks.

United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella body of nine unions announced earlier that the unions would go on a two-day strike on March 15 and 16 opposing privatisation of banks.

Union Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman during her Budget 2021-22 speech earlier this month announced plans to privatise two public sector banks.

Addressing a press conference held at SBI office in Imphal Convenor of UFBU Manipur state, L Maipak announced that the forum will join the nationwide protest against the Central government’s plan. As the Central government is likely to translate into work the proposal anytime, a meeting of the forum held in Bangalore on February 9 last had decided to launch various forms of agitations against the plan, he said. Following the decision, the forum had earlier staged protests and the proposed nationwide strike on March 15 and 16 is the continuation of the protest against the government plan.

Not only joining the two-day nationwide strike, the state branch of the forum will also support other forms of agitations to be launched by the UFBU as further course of action in protest against the Centre’s move, he said.

“The move to privatise the banks is very dangerous for the people, particularly for the bank customers”, he observed, saying that when the public sector banks were converted into private sector banks, the loser will be the people and customers as everything related with the banks are to be privatised.

The forum was compelled to stand against the Central government’s move considering the interest of the people in general and bank customers in particular, he said.

“Public sector banks are the nation builders. The move of the government will weaken the banks which will tantamount to weaken the lifeline of the country”, he said.

Maipak then alleged that instead of further strengthening public sector banks, the present government at the Centre aimed to weaken these, by starving them of the required capital, human resources, through disinvestment and proposed privatisation.

“Weakening public sector banks was unwarranted, unjustified and regressive step,” he said.

The main objective of the proposed strike is to alert the people and bank customers in advance the difficulties they will be faced by the banks and people after the privatisation move.

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