Negotiations between the Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) and the United Forum of Bank Employees have made significant progress towards implementing a five-day work week for banks. The IBA has agreed, in principle, to this proposal in exchange for longer work hours.
Although IBA officials were not available for comment, a senior union official who was not present at the meeting confirmed that IBA had agreed to the proposal during its engagement with union officials on Tuesday.
This move would require the government to notify all Saturdays as holidays under Section 25 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, according to S. Nagarajan, the general secretary of the All India Bank Officers Association. He added that this proposal was outside the scope of the wage talks and had been long pending.
Being the owner of the public sector banks, the government also has a say in this matter. Additionally, the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) would have to accept the proposal since it is responsible for deciding the timing of most interbank activities.
If this proposal is implemented, it would provide much-needed relief to bank employees who have been working six days a week for several years. The change in the workweek would also bring banks in line with other industries that already operate on a five-day workweek. It would also allow bank employees to spend more time with their families and pursue other interests outside of work.
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