In a major breakthrough, Indian bank unions have successfully negotiated a groundbreaking 17% annual salary increase over the next five years, starting from the fiscal year 2021-22. The consensus, slated to kick in from November 1, 2022, promises a substantial financial boost for bank employees nationwide.
Unions Demand Saturday Bank Holidays for Full Endorsement
The landmark wage revision agreement, a significant achievement between the Indian Banks Association (IBA) and various bank unions, comes with a crucial condition. The unions insist on the declaration of all Saturdays as public holidays for banks, a move that could reshape the workweek for banking professionals.
While a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) has been inked between the IBA and the United Forum of Banks, among other unions and associations, the final approval hangs in the balance pending the assurance of a five-day banking system.
17% Salary Surge to Inject ₹12,449 Crore into Banking Sector
The proposed 17% increase in salaries and allowances for the fiscal year 2022-23 is set to infuse approximately ₹12,449 crore into the banking sector. This financial boost encompasses all public sector banks, including the esteemed State Bank of India (SBI).
As per the terms outlined in the MoU, the new pay scales will integrate the merging of dearness allowance (DA) totaling 8,088 points with the basic pay as of October 21, 2022, along with a 3% loading, amounting to ₹1,795 crore.
Negotiations Continue for Comprehensive Bipartite Settlement
To distribute the annual wage hike among bank employees, the allocation will be meticulously calculated based on the establishment expenses for the fiscal year 2022. Ongoing discussions are scheduled to finalize a comprehensive Bipartite Settlement or Joint Note, addressing various consensual matters.
The Battle for a 5-Day Work Week
Notably, the Indian Banks Association has approached the government, urging the designation of all Saturdays as holidays within the banking sector under the Negotiable Instruments Act of 1881. The unions’ unwavering demand for a five-day work week highlights their commitment to not fully endorsing the wage agreement until this crucial condition is met, emphasizing the need for an improved work-life balance for bank employees.