IDBI Bank seek option to shift to other PSBs

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HYDERABAD, March 16(AGENCIES): The employees of IDBI Bank are on the warpath over its categorisation as a private lender and are seeking the option to switch to any other nationalised bank, with protection of pay and service.”

“We also want a memorandum of understanding confirming that existing service conditions and welfare measures for officers will be protected till their retirement,’’ A.V. Vithal Koteswara Rao, General-Secretary, All-India IDBI Bank Officers’ Association, told agencies.

“Once the notion of a private bank arises, not only employees, but also the general public, will lose as public sector banks’ service is not profit-oriented,’’ he said.

IDBI Bank has 17,500 employees on its rolls, spread over 1,890 branches across the country, and has received a top rating for customer service for the last two years. The association has served notice to the bank management with a list of demands, and is planning a one-day nationwide hunger strike on March 30, 2019. The RBI, on Thursday, categorised IDBI Bank as a private sector bank for regulatory purposes, with effect from January 21, 2019. This has come in the wake of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) acquiring 51 per cent of the total paid-up equity share capital of the bank.

In April 2005, IDBI Bank was categorised under a new sub-group, ‘other public sector banks,’ by the RBI.

The ‘other public sector banks’ categorisation, according to the RBI’s letter to the IDBI Chairman on April 15, 2005, was “in view of the assurance to Parliament given on December 8, 2004, by the Finance Minister during the discussion on the Repeal Bill, 2003, that the government holding in IDBI Ltd would always be above 51 per cent.”

However, the current development runs contrary to this assurance, claims the association. The other demands include bilateral transfer facility, revision of lease rentals, introduction of sabbatical leave and stringent measures to recover bad loans.

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