Four bank unions have called for a two-day strike on September 26 and 27 in protest against the central government’s decision to merge 10 public sector banks into four. The strike is expected to affect banking services for four days as according to current RBI rules, banks observe public holidays on the second and fourth Saturdays of the month. This means that banks will also be closed on September 28, (the fourth Saturday in September), making it a four-day break for banking services.
The four unions that have called for the strike are the All India Bank Officer's Confederation, the All India Bank Officer's Association, the Indian National Bank Officer's Congress and the National Organisation of Bank Officers.
“The two-day bank strike, followed by two consecutive weekly offs will primarily impact cheque clearances, issuance of DD/PO, cash deposits/withdrawals and any other services availed at bank branches and ATMs. Banking consumers should work out their cash flows in advance and make adequate cash deposit or withdrawals before the bank strike," Mint quoted Naveen Kukreja, CEO and co-founder of Paisabazaar.com, as saying.
Also, there is a message currently going viral on several social media platforms and messaging app like WhatsApp that banks will remain closed from September 26, 2019, to September 30, 2019. The message requests people to plan accordingly.
The fact is not all bank employees would participate in the strike and the private banks may be functioning normally. The State Bank of India (SBI) in its regulatory filing said: “While bank has made all arrangements to ensure normal functioning in its branches and offices, it is likely that work in our bank may be impacted to some extent by the strike.“
The message also claimed that banks will remain closed on September 30 owing to banks’ half-yearly closing of accounts.
However, in the list of holidays on the RBI website, the central bank does not mention September 30, 2019, as a holiday. While the banks are closed on the April 1 every year due to yearly closing of accounts, there is no such holiday for half-yearly closing of accounts.