Bank strike hits services for 2nd day in Kashmir, some ATMs shut

SRINAGAR, Feb 1 (Agencies): Banking services remained paralysed for the second day on Saturday due to two-day nationwide strike called by United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), an umbrella body of nine bank unions, in support of their demands, including wage revision.
Customers continued to face inconvenience in the summer capital, Srinagar and other parts of Kashmir valley since Friday due to suspension of all banking services.
Branches of all the centralised banks, including State Bank of India (SBI), remained closed since yesterday, causing inconvenience to the customers. ”Customers, who had reached bank branches, were shocked to see them (banks) locked. We had no idea about the strike,” they said.
The customers alleged that some Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) are already running dry as the cash was not refilled on Friday and this morning due to bank strike.
Bank unions have demanded a 20 per cent pay hike on pay slip components with adequate loading thereof while the management is not willing to go beyond 12.25 per cent. Other demands include five-day work week, merger of special allowance with basic pay and scrapping of new pension scheme.
The strike calendar includes a three-day bank strike from March 11 and another indefinite all-India bank strike from April 1 if the wage settlement is not completed.

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