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Tuesday, April 21, 2015

Wage Talk Progress Summary IBA And UFBU

Status of Full Holidays on 2nd and 4th Saturday in Banks – Many Hurdles To Be Crossed. This May Remain a Dream For The Time Being-------------- by Rajesh Goyal(source:allbankingsolutions.com)

We in recent weeks have seen number of messages on our mobiles and and posts on FaceBook declaring that holidays for 2nd and 4th Saturday will be implemented wef from 1st April 2015 itself.    However, now it is confirmed that all these were rumors and some of these were sent as messages to befool the gullible bankers (as 1st April is celebrated as Fools Day).  
We are quoting  below the extracts from two recent circulars issued by C.H. Venkatachalam,  General Secretary of AIBEA:-
Circular letter No. 27/121/2015/17  dated 19th March, 2015 :-
“Working Hours are service conditions which are part of the provisions of Bipartite Settlement. The relevant provisions have to be duly amended at the time of full-fledged settlement. Negotiable Instruments Act has to be amended and RBI also has to issue revised instruction on banking hours. In the meantime, based on our Minutes of Discussions, IBA has taken up the issue with the Government and RBI for due changes pending amendment to our Settlement. 2 Saturdays as holidays can be implemented only after completing these formalities. Hence units would appreciate that all these procedures would take some time”
Circular letter No 27/122/2015/18 dated 2nd April, 2015:-
“The MoD has to be translated into regular Settlement under the I.D Act amending the existing provisions regarding working hours. Further change of holiday in Banks also needs official changes in the regulations by RBI and some amendment to the Negotiable Instruments Act. All these issues have been taken up by IBA with the concerned authorities in RBI and Government. Without completing and complying with these formalities, the holidays in Banks cannot be changed. 
Further, our units should be aware that our Settlement would cover only 45 Banks whereas there are other Banks which are outside IBA and also not covered by our Settlement. Even amongst the 45 Banks, in the case of foreign Banks, only workmen are covered by their mandate to IBA and not officers. Hence there are technical issues to be dealt with before implementing the change of holidays. All such issues have to be sorted out before the new holiday system is introduced”.

Conclusion :  
Therefore, CHV has clearly indicated that this facility can be implemented only and only  after the following requirements are fulfilled:-
(a)            The final settlement is signed between IBA and UFBU under the ID Act whereby the existing provisions of working hours have to be changed;
(b)            Negotiable Instruments Act has to be amended;
(c)             RBI needs to change its regulations;  
(d)            Other technical issues like to make left over  banks (i.e. which are not members of IBA)  to fall in line with the revised working hours / days.
As per AIBEA, these issues have already been taken up by IBA with GoI / RBI etc.  However, there is no clarity as to the views of RBI / GoI / left over banks  on these issues.    There needs to be clarity whether the NI Act amendment will need to be passed by both Houses of Parliament – if so, whether all the parties will support this move or corporate houses will ensure blockage of such provisions.
In view of the fact that GS of AIBEA has given these facts in writing, we do not have reasons to disbelieve that these are not required.    Thus, now it is sure that this part of the settlement will be implemented only and only after the above conditions are completed.
Now what we can now debate is only whether GoI / RBI / Left over banks will agree with the commitment made by IBA in its MoD dated 23rd February, 2015, and the time that will be taken by all these agencies to ensure amendments in all the above Acts / Rules.  
We feel it will be a long drawn process and thus bankers should NOT dream of 2nd and 4th Saturdays to be off at least in the very near future.   It is only CHV who can tell, as to how much time it will take to complete all the above formalities and whether GoI will agree with what IBA has agreed.   However, he is non-committal to this.   Only time will tell the fate of this part of the agreement.

I have finished the article only on late night of 3rd April, 2015, and decided to upload the same on 4th April forenoon.   However, I have just come across the news on internet under the heading  “RBI nixes bank plan for additional holidays on alternate Saturdays” in Financial Express, which indicates The banking sector regulator feels that the infrastructure for keeping key deposit related functions need to be strengthened before the banks can down shutters to enjoy a five day week.”   The report also further reads :-
“SBI had sent the reference to RBI to clear the new holiday schedule. The  bank employees have argued that as the stock markets and clearing houses remain closed over the weekend, it made little sense to keep the banks open on Saturdays. The compromise of the alternate Saturdays as a day off for the banks is meant to gauge the extent of pressure if the banks follow a five day week.  
Thus, now bankers have to keep on waiting and again start bargaining.   Unions will again make fool of the Aam Banker and delay the process of finalizing the 10th BPS.  Bankers need to keep licking their wounds.     It seems CHV was well aware of these developments when he issued the above circulars to calm down his cadres as they have been fooled to defer their strikes.
(source: allbankingsolutions.com)

The next round of negotiations is now to take place on 22nd April, 2015.  Before we know the outcome of this meeting,  let us summaries the achievements / failures till 20th April 2015 (i.e. exactly 900 days from the date when 10th BPS had become due).   Herein we have merely regrouped the post of Mr Kamlesh Chaturvedi, a well know leader who had been taking up the cause of the bankers.   He had posted  this on his Facebook page about two days back.
Mr Chaturvedi says in its post as follows:
“It has been informed that next round of discussions with Officers Associations will be held on 22nd April. We understand that soon IBA will hold negotiations with workmen unions too. Though it would not be prudent to analyse and comment on outcome of negotiations held so far, still I have made an attempt to look at what has been demanded and what has been achieved so far on the basis of information received from Unions.    if I have committed any mistake, such mistake must be pointed out”.

Issue / Topic
Achievement Till Date (20/4/2015)
Construction of Basic Pay :
Revision of Basic Pay w.e.f. 1-11-2012 by merger of D.A. payable at the average index for the quarter July-September 2012.
Revision of Basic Pay w.e.f. 1-11-2012 by merger of D.A. as on 01.11.2011 i.e 4440 points. By Agreeing to merger of DA one year prior to date of effect of the settlement i,r. 01.11.2012 will substantially reduce the revised Basic Pay as compared to justified and reasonable demand.
Construction of Basic Pay :
Construction of revised pay scales by loading thereafter at 30% to clerical staff and 35% to subordinate staff.
Construction of revised pay scales by loading 2% of the Basic plus DA as on 31.03.2012. Since DA as on 01.11.2012 would already be merged, very little DA would be left on 31.03.2012. Against demand of 30% loading by merger of DA Payable for the quarter July-September 2012 will further result in reduction of revised basic pay.
Improvements in Leave Rules
Casual Leave
Casual leave to be increased to 18 days.
Demand is NOT fulfilled
Availment of maximum CL at a stretch
The ceiling of maximum 4 days for availment of CL subject to a maximum of 6 days including prefixing / intervening / suffixing holidays to be removed.
Exact out come still unknown.
Unavailed CL
Unavailed Casual Leave to be sanctioned without medical certificate.
Privilege Leave Accumulation
Accumulation of Privilege Leave should be increased to 300 days
Demand is FULFILLED.
Encashment of PL
Encashment of Privilege Leave should be increased to 300 days. Where there is any shortfall under PL, Sick Leave to be allowed for encashment, if available.
Demand is NOT fulfilled. Neither Encashment of PL to 300 has been achieved nor sick leave Encashment to fill the shortfall has been achieved.
No of Occasions when PL should be permitted
Employees should be permitted to avail Privilege Leave on 5 occasions in a calendar year.
Demand is partially fulfilled, perhaps 4 occasions will be permitted.
Notice Period for PL
Notice period for availing privilege leave should be reduced from 30 days to 7 days
Demand is partially fulfilled as notice period has been reduced from 30 days to 15 days against justified demand of 7 days.
PL Availed on grounds of sickness
Privilege leave availed, irrespective of number of days, on grounds of sickness on production of medical certificate be allowed without being counted as a chance.
Outcome still not known
PL for Sickness of family members
Employees should be permitted to avail their privilege leave on production of sickness certificate even in cases of illness of their family members residing with them.
Outcome still not known
Encashment of PL for cases where job is lost
Privilege Leave encashment to be permitted in case of loss of job due to punishments/resignations.
Outcome still not known
Intervening Holidays for PL
Intervening holidays falling in between the leave period should not be counted as Privilege Leave.
Outcome still not known
CL for Physically Challenged Employees
25 days CL for physically challenged employees.
Outcome still not known.

(Registered under the Trade Unions Act 1926, Registration No.:3427/Delhi)
           C/o Bank of India, Parliament Street Branch
        PTI Building, 4, Parliament Street, New Delhi: 110001
                      Phone:011-23730096 Tel/Fax 23719431
                           E-Mail: aiboc.sectt@gmail.com

Circular No. 2015/20                                                                                   Date: 18/04/2015

TO ALL AFFILIATES / STATE UNITS / MEMBERS                            
Dear Comrades,

UFBU Meeting at Mumbai on 15th April, 2015 & Meeting with IBA on 16th April, 2015

Our members are aware that MOU was signed on 23rd February, 2015, for the Xth Bipartite Settlement in which an annual wage increase of 15% on pay slip components was offered by the IBA, which works out to Rs. 4725 crore along with the second and fourth Saturdays off in Banking Industry. The second meeting of the Sub Group on demands of Officers was held on 16.03.2015 with IBA. IBA called UFBU for another round of talks on 16.04.2015 and also the Sub Group of Officers for the next round of talks on the same day.
UFBU decided to meet prior to meeting with IBA in order to form unanimity on the scheme of Medical Insurance Policy. Accordingly, United Forum of Bank Unions met at Mumbai on 15.04.2015 to discuss about the proposed Medical Insurance Scheme in lieu of the scheme for reimbursement of Hospitalisation expenses presently in vogue in Public Sector Banks and any other issue on the present scenario.

While discussing about the Medical Insurance Scheme, we reiterated our stand as was conveyed vide our Letter No. 2015/51 dated 07.04.2015 sent to IBA. On other issues, we requested all the constituents of UFBU to take a common stand of loading 2% on basic pay and DA as on 31.03.2012 as per the terms of MOU and not to compromise on anything else. On this issue, a couple of constituents had a different view. We shall try to convince them with our view and shall endeavour to ensure that our interpretation of the MOU on this aspect of loading is demanded by the UFBU. This interpretation is all the more necessary in view of the fact that there are lot of constraints in construction of pay scales with a limit of 2% of loading on basic pay and DA. We also made it very clear in the UFBU meeting that we will not sign any agreement till the time the second and fourth Saturday off in the Banking Industry is ensured or a firm commitment is signed by IBA in this regard giving a time line for its implementation.

We also expressed our strong views about taking up of the issues of retirees like 100% DA neutralization for retirees prior to 01.11.2001, updation of pension, revision in family pension and extension of another option of pension to resignees and compulsorily retired who have been excluded from the option of pension despite the clear understanding in the last settlement. We also emphasized that group hospitalization insurance policy for retirees should also be demanded from IBA.


The IBA Sub-Committee on hospitalization scheme headed by Shri Arun Tiwari, Chairman of Union Bank of India met UFBU on 16.04.2015 at 11 a.m. in the committee room of IBA. Other members of the committee were Shri M.V. Tanksale, CEO, IBA, Shri Shailesh Verma,            Chief General Manager, State Bank of India, Shri B.S.Shekhawat,                                                                                                                                                                                                 General Manager (HR), Central Bank of India, Shri K. Unnikrishnan, Dy. CEO, IBA, Shri K.S. Chauhan, Senior Vice President of IBA and other officials. The detailed discussion on the hospitalization scheme took place and after threadbare discussion on all apprehensions and issues raised by us, IBA agreed that:

1.    All benefits available in any Bank on hospitalization / domiciliary treatment over and above the scheme under discussion shall continue.
2.    Employees and officers will not deal either with the insurance company or TPA and they will continue to deal with the Bank as per the practice in vogue.
3.    There will not be any ceiling on reimbursement under the hospitalization scheme except for those which are mentioned in the insurance policy document provided to us by the IBA (circulated by us to all Affiliates). Suggestion of our Confederation for getting  the Mediclaim Policy vetted from some renowned TPA was appreciated and agreed by the IBA in the interest of all.


The meeting of the Sub-group headed by Shri Ashwani Kumar, Chairman and Managing Director, Dena Bank was held at 4 p.m. on 16.04.2015 in the committee room of IBA. Smt. Indira Padmani, General Manager, Indian Overseas Bank, Sh. B.S. Shekhawat, General Manager, Central Bank of India, Shri M.V. Tanksale, CEO, IBA, Shri K.S. Chauhan, Senior Vice President of IBA and other officials of IBA represented IBA. Our organization was represented by             Com. Y. Sudarshan, President and the undersigned. One representative each from other three Officers’ Organisations was also present.

The issues of officers working conditions and allowances (officiating allowance, deputation allowance, special area allowance, reimbursement of expenses on transfer and many other important issues) were discussed. The need for regulated working hours / compensation till the time the demand is materialized was also discussed with a thrust. The meeting could not be concluded as there were certain other issues which required further discussions. Therefore, we demanded one more round of talks, to which IBA agreed. We also discussed the following issues with IBA.

1.    IBA should give us the new pay structure immediately and pay scales so drawn should be discussed with us within reasonable time.
2.    The issue of second and fourth Saturday to be holiday in a month, which was agreed by IBA with UFBU, should be implemented immediately before signing the joint note.
3.    Discussion was made with the IBA to demand extension of one more option for pension to all those who resigned on completion of 20 years of service and compulsorily retired since the cost of second option of pension includes the cost of extending this benefit to these categories of officers as well.
4.    With regard to the retirees’ issues, it has been decided to take up with IBA:
a)    Updation of pension as per regulation 35(1) of the Pension Regulations 1995 since updation of pension is in-built in pension regulation and IBA should give necessary instruction to all the banks to implement the same,
b)   Extending DA neutralization for those pensioners who retired before 01.11.2002 and to improve family pension at par with the government pensioners.
5.    We have decided to request IBA to extend the benefit of Mediclaim Policy to the retirees also. The modalities of the policy and payment of premium shall be worked out separately, since Mediclaim Policy is the need of the hour for the retirees.

We are pleased to inform you that the next round of talks with the IBA tentatively will be held on 22.04.2015 at Mumbai. We shall keep our members informed of the developments.

                   With comradely greetings,
 Comradely yours, 

                                                                                    (HARVINDER SINGH)                                                                                                                 GENERAL SECRETARY


Circular No.8/VI/2015
April 17, 2015
Dear Comrades,
Preceding the IBA meeting on 16th April, 2015, UFBU met at Maharastra State Bank Employees Federation Office at Fort Mumbai on 15.04.2015 at 18.00 hrs.  Our Organisation was represented by Com.Alok.Khare, Vice Chairman, Com.S.S.Shishodia, President besides the undersigned. All the constituents have participated in the meet.
1.         The following issues were discussed for taking up the same with IBA.
Ø  Improvements in the proposed Insurance backed Hospitalisation Scheme.
Ø  Four issues concerning the Retirees- [a] 100% D.A.Neutralisation for retirees prior to 1.11.2002; [b].Family Pension; [c]. Updation of Pension; [d]. Coverage of Hospitalisation to Retirees.
Ø  Constraints in construction of Pay scales with the condition of 2% loading 
Ø  Feasibility of converting the DA series from the base year of 1960 to 2001.
2.         The IBA subcommittee on Hospitalisation Scheme was headed by Shri.Arun Tiwari, Chairman Union Bank of India, Shri.Shailesh Verma CGM, SBI, Shri.B.S.Shekhawat, GM (HRD) CBI, Shri.M.V.Tanksale, CEO IBA, Shri K.Unnikrishnan Dy.CEO IBA besides HR officials of IBA. The representatives of all the eleven unions have participated.
3.         There was a detailed discussion on the Hospitalisation based on the documents provided by the IBA to all the unions.  Our organisation has forwarded the various suggestions on the scheme to IBA, earlier to the commencement of the discussions, The said communication addressed to the IBA is sent herewith. At the end, there are very many loose ends to be knitted to present a comprehensive and an improved beneficial scheme to the Bankmen at large.
4.         In the exclusive sub committee meeting of Officers, IBA team was headed by Shri. Ashwini Kumar Chairman Dena Bank, Smt.Indira Padmini, GM, IOB, Shri.B.S.Shekhwat, GM CBI besides the top officials and also of HR team of IBA,
5.         The talks continued on issues listed in the Charter of demands of officers. The discussions are progressing but inconclusive. The Officers’ organisations have requested for one more sitting to take forward the discussions preferably next week.
6.         We shall keep the units informed about the progress made to convert the MOU into 7th Joint Note.
Yours Comradely,

April 18, 2015
Dear Comrades, 
40 years back, on the same date, we lost one of precious jewel of the middle class Trade Union movement of the Country, Com.H.L.Parvana, In the words ofCom.Prabhat Kar..
'" .....He was the life and soul of AIBEA centre. His dedication to the cause and thoroughness of minutest details are unparalleled. In every dimension of work of AIBEA, he was indispensable. In movement, in agitation, in campaign, in negotiations, in settling differences and solving problems his unique contribution was visible. As an agitator, organiser, as a leader conversant with every sphere of Trade union movement, his imprint was distinct. He was a comrade with clarity, with vision and a comrade who never knew tiredness." 
We pay our respectful homage to the great son of India, who stood taller by his contribution to the society at large and to the nation through strengthening the Public Sector Banking concept.  He was dismissed from bank's service for organising the trade union in Punjab National Bank. He was the one who had unique distinction of remembrance and respect from all sections of the society, that the newspapers of Delhi was not published on 19th April,1975,as a mark of respect, next to Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, the Prime Minister of the Country in 1964.
 "The trade union is an instrument for social Change", saying by the architect of alternative model of goverence by the class struggles. This expressions aptly suits to long travel of the five magic letters of middle class trade union  organisation of the Bankmen of our nation VIZ; AIBEA. There is certainly a need to look back to the history to understand the path traversed by the great movement from various circumstances.
ROME WAS NOT BUILT OVER NIGHT BUT BRICK BY BRICK:  The colonial rule established through trade and commerce, by the East India Company, led to the establishment of Banks in India, which also attracted individual Indians to establish the Banks. In the international arena, the Great October Revolution in Soviet Russia in 1917,sparked the fire for initiating independence struggles. The first and foremost trade union organisation in pre independent India was established in October 1920, the AITUC,  was a milestone in the advancement of Trade union, an inspiration instilled in the young minds.  The Quit India Movement, the naval mutiny and also the freedom struggles were the stepping stones for the foundation of AIBEA.
In this background, unable to bear the brunt and inhuman behaviour of Bank Managements in various parts of the country, to secure the job security with dignity, the first trade union of Bankmen was founded on 20th April,1946, in the colonial control. The birth place was naturally Bengal, which produced nobel men and women for the betterment of our dear Nation. Com.Prabhat Kar, who took all the pains to organise the Bank employees in the State of Bengal, was an employee of The Llyods Bank Ltd. For upholding the values and also protest against wrong application of law to deny the reasonable wages to the workforce in Central Bank of India, a solidarity strike call was  given by the Bengal State Federation under his leadership led to his dismissal from bank service. He took all the pains to organise the bankmen by his organisational tours continuously. In the year 1953, he took the reins of the bankmen movement, as the General Secretary of AIBEA, effectively led and powerfully presented the arguments before the tribunals. During the two decades of journey from 1946 to 1966, the various forms of struggles launched by him inside the courts and outside in the streets, won the right of negotiation through bilateral agreements. First and Second bilateral settlements in 1966 and 1970 were of significant in nature and contents. The role played by the TWINS Com.Prabhat kar and Com.H.L.Parvana in the Bank Nationalisation struggle led to the division in the ruling party and also tremendous capacity to repulse back when the powerful lobby of Industrialists opposed the Bank Nationalisation through legal recourse. Not only extended organisational support to realise the demand for the Welfare of the nation through Nationalisation, but also ensured workers participation in th Banks Board by an innovative idea at that point of time. 
During the emergency time, the target of attack was on AIBEA and its leadership by the adversaries within and also by the Government too. He withstood along with Com.D.P.Chadha, one more captain added to the list of leaders par excellence. It was in the post emergency period, to realise the demand of wage revision, an indefinite strike call in January 1979 was given during the Janata Party Government. All the operating unions in the Industry were to plunge into action, but the then AICOBOO backtracked. It was the part of deceptive game backed up by the Government. Not deterred by the sudden turn of events, one day prior to the indefinite call, a settlement was clinched, by Com.Prabhat kar with the help of late Mohan Dharia.
In the 1980 Conference held at Allahabad, saw emergence of another towering personality Com.Tarakeswar Chakraborti as General Secretary of AIBEA to lead the movement from 1980 to 2003. Fourth Bipartite settlement was signed on 16th September,1984 without even a day’s strike in the Industry. That was the sharp tactics of the leaders who were heading the movement.
THE NEED TO ORGANISE THE OFFICERS WAS FELT AND REALISED: Whether AIBEA acted as a splitter ? The answer is NO.To develop the militancy coupled with the working relationship with workmen, AIBOA was founded, which Government and Managements never wanted. The fundamental principle is “working together works”. Com.Prabhatda was a really a visionary leader, par excellence.  The birth of AIBOA was the brainchild of Com.Prabhat Kar, who was the founder President of AIBOA. He ensured that AIBOA enters the negotiation table by submitting the first charter of demands on 26th June 1984. The joint strike call of AIBEA and AIBOA brought the benefit of first joint note on officers wage revision in August 1985 in the Industry.
 The struggles led to pin point the ills of the Industry right from 1985,publication of defaulters lists and leading Parliament Morcha to draw the attention of the common men of the nation were note worthy. Securing the benefit of “cradle to grave” Pension Scheme in the Industry in 1993 and also 2010 to the Bankmen by AIBEA was fully backed up by AIBOA. It was richly acknowledged by the General Secretary in his Report presented in Jaipur conference in 1996, the role of AIBOA  standing firm to thwart the attack of JAC.
Contributions and achievements of AIBEA in building a fine value based society of Bankmen are worth mentioning. Fighting for Jobs and jobs security has become a perennial issue, right from the date of birth of AIBEA till date.
The powerful and magic five letters attracts the attention of everyone- young and old, poor and rich, employees and the retirees, and Government and managements.
The journey continues...... Caravan walks on...........  AIBEA....... March on.
AIBOA  expresses best of memories and wishes on the
70th Founding Day of AIBEA
 Yours Comradely,

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