Oppose utilisation of bank employees beyond working hours without compensation


Circular by Indian Bank Employees’ Federation



(Affiliated to BEFI)

Mobile No.94421 25120

email id: ibef1986@gmail.com

17, Ameerjan Street, Choolaimedu,
Chennai-600 094

Phone No. 044-2483 7523-7525

email id: ibea_tn@hotmail.com


Circular No. IBEF/011/2022-2025 13.10.2023

Please circulate widely

Dear Comrades,

BEFI, at its Central Committee held on 7-8 Oct at Kolkata, has adopted a resolution to intensify its protracted movement on the demand for urgent recruitment of permanent employees in public sector banks.

The ruling Government at the centre is moving aggressively to privatise and sell off public sector banks. It has already dealt a nasty body blow through reckless mergers. The market share of PSBs has been falling since then. With ill intentions, the Government is crippling their customer service by squeezing the manpower to drive away its harassed customers towards private banks giving them adequate leeway to utilize this opportunity. In reply to a question seeking required manpower at the Rajya Sabha on 08.08.23, the Government replied “…98% staff is in position against their business requirements.” We all know this is far from reality. BEFI had reacted through a press release terming the reply as a cruel joke on the unemployed youth of this country and a big blow to the customers. We need to reach the people to expose the obnoxious ploy.

Our Indian Bank as on 30.06.2023 is having staff strength of 25632 officers and 12500 clerical staff while the strength of sub-staff cadre including sweepers is a meagre 2603 for manning 5798 branches besides hundred plus administrative and support offices. The business of the Bank has grown sharply to Rs.11.01 lakh crores as on June 2023 from Rs.8.57 lakh crores in March 2020 while since December 2020, the number of frontline clerical staff of 13377 and sub-staff of 2864 have decreased and officers (25436) is almost stagnant.

The per employee business as on March 2020 was Rs. 20.93 Crores and increased by almost 30% to 26.58 Crores as on June 2023. The net profit per employee as on March 2020 was Rs. 4.02 lakhs and increased fourfold to 16.75 lakhs as on June 2023. The business per branch increased 16% in the same period. With a blind eye to the reality prevailing in the branches, the Management contends that as 85% of the transactions are in digital mode, there is surplus manpower in branches. If so, why the most digital private banks are increasing their employee strength by leaps and bounds? Moreover, this “Surplus” mantra is meant only for award staff. After repeated demands from our Federation and after a national demonstration programme on charter of demands, management had recently decided to go for recruitment of little more than 1000 clerks. Thanks to the pressure created through our demonstrative programmes.

One cannot understand the logic behind creating more executive posts right from Executive Directors to Chief General Managers on the basis of business of the Bank, the same logic is denied when it comes to the case of clerks and sub staff cadre. There is no recruitment of sub staff cadre for decades.

The thrust given to digital platform products, which require KYC updations, the process of ekyc, rekyc, capc, inoperative, unclaimed, deaf, endless pass book printing, signature scanning and slew of other non-voucher jobs will not be counted in the work load. Apart from this, calling the customers over phone for ekyc updation, PAPL loans etc are other kind of works entrusted to clerks. Non-existence of trained or permanent sub staff in many of the branches adds to the work load. The bank is prey to the myopic policy of making profits through unpaid wages of permanent vacancies in sub staff and PPTS cadre and saving on the salaries of required frontline clerical staff. Due to shortage of manpower, the works like TAB Banking, IndOasis are entrusted to temporary employees and sometimes they get into trouble. On complaint in a fraudulent incident, one poor temporary sub staff was taken by police since he created IndOasis app in that customer’s mobile. The recent incidents in Bank of Baroda are an example where RBI has directed the Bank not to enrol further customers to their “BOB World” mobile application.

Targets are revised every day and even if many of the parameters are reached there is no satisfaction from the hierarchy. Cross selling of private insurance products is given the top priority and targets are fixed for that also, which is mainly canvassed from the loan customers, which will send a message to the public through those customers and there it is compulsory to take an insurance policy for a loan.

The fact remains that clerical employees most of them are new, are squeezed up to beyond scheduled duty hours for various jobs including cash transactions, violating extant guidelines and a potential risk is case of theft in both the cases of bank and that of customer which will spoil the name of the Bank. The branch managers are asking the clerks to come to branch on holidays stating it as Zonal Office instructions. Clerks are threatened that if they don’t come on holidays as instructed by ZO, they have to attract the wrath of the management.

On the other hand, customers are fighting and quarrelling with the frontline clerical staff for delayed service due to shortage of manpower. Throwing passbooks on the face of the staff, threatening the staff to task outside the branch are the day-to-day happenings and the management is simply ignoring their responsibility of safeguarding the staff members. Language problem is another menace in South India due to posting of huge number of north Indian officers to the south.

The only solution to all these maladies is recruitment in all cadre including clerks, sub-staff and sweeper categories in sufficient number. It was resolved by BEFI to oppose outsourcing, ensure absorption of temporary employees and against exploitation of BCs. It was decided to oppose utilisation of bank employees beyond working hours without compensation as per Bipartite settlement.

In the present situation of exploitation of the workforce due to heavy workload, leaving the branch after office hours when the work like closing of cash is not completed, in reality, one cannot stop the work abruptly and leave the branch by 5.00 pm.

Taking all these into considerations, since we are not expected to work beyond office hours, office orders are to be issued by the Branch Management instructing the employees to work beyond office hours. We call upon all our members, in the eventuality of working beyond office hours, at the first instance, to demand instructions in writing to stay beyond office hours and to be compensated suitably as per industry level settlement. In the eventuality, if situation does not improve, we may have to resort to legal means to ensure implementation of the prevailing laws of the country.

With revolutionary greetings,

Yours comradely,
(Hari Rao)
General Secretary.



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