Police officers stand guard in front of automated teller machines (ATM) in Mumbai, India. (Photographer: Adeel Halim/Bloomberg)

Unions Threaten Nationwide Strike On Dec. 26 To Protest Merger Of Banks

Bank unions have called for a nationwide strike on Dec. 26 to protest the proposed merger of Bank of Baroda, Dena Bank and Vijaya Bank.

The government had in September approved the merger of the three public sector lenders.

The strike will be organised by the United Forum of Bank Unions, an umbrella body of nine employee and officer unions.

The government and the concerned banks were moving ahead with their decision for amalgamation and hence it was decided to give the call for strike, All India Bank Employees Association General Secretary CH Venkatachalam said.

All unions under UFBU will participate in this strike call, said Ashwani Rana, vice president of the National Organization of Bank Workers.

Following the government nod, the respective boards of these banks gave their approval for the amalgamation.

The merged entity will be third largest lender of the country after State Bank of India and HDFC Bank Ltd.

As at June-end, the total business size of the three entities together was Rs 14.82 lakh crore.

Of the three banks, Dena Bank is the weakest, with non-performing asset ratio of 11.04 per cent and business of Rs 1.72 lakh crore, as compared to 5.4 percent NPA and Rs 10.2 lakh crore business of Bank of Baroda and 4.10 percent NPA and Rs 2 lakh crore worth business of Vijaya Bank.

Also read: Merger Worries ‘Exaggerated’, Says BoB; Not A Bailout, Says Dena; Will Not Be Drag, Assures Vijaya Bank