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Not All Banks Will Be Privatised: Sitharaman, Amid Bank Strikes

The Finance Minister also said the government will create a Rs 20,000-crore Development Finance Institution (DFI).

Updated
Business
2 min read
File photo of finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman.
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Amid the two-day nationwide bank strike against the proposed privatisation of banks, Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman on Tuesday, 16 March, said that not all banks will be privatised. Further, Sitharaman, according to ANI, said that whenever the banks are privatised the interest of the employees will be protected.

“Interests of workers of banks which are likely to be privatised will absolutely be protected, whether their salaries or scale or pension – all will be taken care of.”   
Nirmala Sitharaman

Sitharaman added that the public sector enterprise policy “very clearly states” that public sector banks will continue.

Cabinet Approves Bill to Set Up DFI

Sitharaman, on Monday, according to PTI, informed that the government will create a Rs 20,000-crore Development Finance Institution (DFI) to mobilise Rs 111 lakh crore required for funding of the ambitious national infrastructure pipeline. The Finance Minister, while unveiling the Union Budget 2021-22, had said that a professionally managed DFI will be created to “provide, enable and catalyse infrastructure financing”.

Approximately 7,000 projects have been identified under the NIP with a projected investment of Rs 111 lakh crore during 2020-25.

Two-Day Bank Strike

  • A security person stands near the closed gate of a bank during the 2nd day of a two-day nationwide strike, called by the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), against the proposed privatisation of two state-owned lenders, in Kolkata, Tuesday, 16 March.
  • A security person stands near the closed gate of a bank during the 2nd day of a two-day nationwide strike, called by the United Forum of Bank Unions (UFBU), against the proposed privatisation of two state-owned lenders, in Kolkata, Tuesday, 16 March.

Banking services around the country took a hit on Monday, 15 March, after over 10 lakh bank employees went on a two-day strike, protesting the privatisation of two public sector banks and ‘retrograde’ banking reforms.

As many as 80,000 bank branches participated in the strike, affecting clearance of cheques worth Rs 16,500 crore, trade unions told Mint.

The strike was announced after a failed conciliation meeting between the bank unions and the Union Finance Ministry on 4, 9, and 10 March, reported IANS. The bank unions had asked for the government to reconsider privatisation, as it may lead to job loss.

(With inputs from PTI, ANI and IANS.)

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