Monday, 30 October 2017

IBA inks wage revision agreement for bank employees minus pensioners

As per broad agreement with IBA, bank employees wages are subject to revision every 5 years and the wage revision w.r.e.f. 01/11/2007 was inked by the IBA in 2010 after prolonged agitation programs. Now let us see as to when the current wage revision gets signed w.r..e.f. 01/11/2017. It is an irony that wage revisions are inked after 2-3 years of the pre decided due dates of agreements. It has become custom with the Government and IBA to linger on the process to deprive the bank employees of their legitimate rights. When banks make provisions in their balance sheets for the increased salaries then the IBA and the Government deliberately pull the finalization of the wage revisions by 2-3 years presumably to defer the liability of approx 5000 crores of rupees and making the Banks and Government richer by approx 1500 crores on account of interest component as the government never pays interest on delayed payment of ultimate wages to its employees.

Now the IBA has once again going to ink one such pact w.r.e.f. 01/11/2017 as per broad minutes of discussions being held between the stake holders. IBA is once again likely to deny the legitimate wages to the Bank employees by deferring and delaying the decision. The IBA will not only make the Banks richer by approx Rs.1500 crore by delaying the wage revision through dilly delaying tactics but will also rob the bank employees of their wages for striking work to expedite the wage revisions.

While revising the wages, the pensioners are denied the benefit of revision as pensioners can not strike work to force the government to recognise their long unblemished service of 35 to 40 years. Pensioners would have not demanded any revision in their pensions had the cost of living been arrested by the Government. It is unjustified on the part of any government to freeze the pension of Bank Pensioners. One more interesting fact is that a person who took birth on 31/10/1956, due to God's wish and not his or her on choice, retired on 31/10/2016 will not get the pension as payable to his or her counterpart retiring on 01/11/2017 due to none of his or her fault. To remove such anomalies Government should revise the pension of bank pensioners on every wage revision. Moreover the pension rules are framed by the governments based on the longevity of life of pensioners whereas majority of pensioners die an early death due to poor social security measures and lack of affordable healthcare in India. A bank pensioner, with special reference to the pensioners of Punjab National Bank, gets hospitalization expenses of up-to Rs.4 lac per annum (floating cover for both husband and wife and in case of surviving one member  the annual premium is kept same i.e. Rs.36,998-00) only after coughing up annual premium of Rs.36,998-00 to keep the IBA Group Insurance Policy running. This is black spot of the face of Government of India that it can not take care of Bank Retirees who served the Indian Banking Industry for more than 35 to 40 years. Moreover Government of India has lowered the Bank interest rates and hard earned money of public including retirees and senior citizens, who make both ends meet through interest income alone, is made available to capitalists like Ambanis and Adanis at lower rates of interest.  Government is facilitating robbing the common man to pass on the benefits to the creamy layer of this country. If the GOI fails to arrest this trend then there can be wide unrest among the masses to fight for their ultimate rights. Let the finance minister and prime minister take note of facts before it is too late and pensioners should be allowed the benefits of future wage revisions after their retirement.

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