As bank employees across the country agitating against the proposed privatization, Union finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman has offered some relief to them, saying that not all banks will be privatized. Moreover, even if it happens, the interest of the employees will be protected she said.
While addressing the media amid a two-day nationwide bank strike called by nine unions Sitharaman said, “The decision of Privatization is a well thought out decision. We want Banks to get more equity… We want banks to meet the aspirations of the country”.
“Those banks which are likely to get privatized, the interest of every staff member will be protected. Interest of existing employees will be protected at all cost,” she added.
“Public sector enterprise policy very clearly says that we will continue with PSBs. Interests of the workers will absolutely be protected.”
Banks across the country remained shut on Saturday and Sunday. Many key banking operations across India have been largely hit by the strike, in which as many as 10 lakh bank employees are expected to participate.
The strike was triggered by the government’s plan to privatize two public sector banks as part of its ambitious disinvestment drive to generate ₹ 1.75 lakh crore.
The minister had also announced a deadline for the overall disinvestment project which will be by the completion of the Financial Year of 2022.
Sitharaman also slammed Congress’s Rahul Gandhi for criticizing the privatization move in a tweet.
Rahul Gandhi in his tweet wrote: “GOI (the Government of India) is privatizing profit & nationalizing loss. Selling PSBs to Modicronies gravely compromises India’s financial security. I stand in solidarity with the striking bank employees.”