COVID-19 second wave: Bank employees seek to reduce banking hours

Members of Maha Gujarat Bank Employees’ Association (MGBEA) have recently made a representation before the State Level Bankers’ Committee (SLBC) seeking to reduce banking hours in the wake of the steep surge in COVID-19 cases. In the wake of the prevailing situation in Gujarat, MGBEA has requested the head of SLBC and the State Government to issue guideline to banks.

MGBEA mentioned in a statement released recently, “All branches can reduce business hours from 10 am to 2 pm and provide essential services only. Employees should be allowed to go home after the business hours. The purpose is to reduce the exposure of the staff with public.”

Janak Rawal, General Secretary, MGBEA, stated, “Bank branches will be vulnerable points for transmission of Corona Virus. Nearly 10,000 bank employees are tested positive in March 2021. Across Gujarat, some 3,718 branches of nationalised banks along with 1,286 branches of State Bank of India and 1,619 of district and state cooperative banks in addition to 769 branches of gramin bank and 2,206 private bank branch have been operational full time.”

Rawal further added, “After the hearing of a Suo moto public interest litigation on the COVID-19 surge, Gujarat Government issued some guideline related to COVID-control in Gujarat and allowed government offices to work with 50% staff. We have represented the matter before SLBC, Gujarat and to the chief secretary, Gujarat government to issue guideline for the functioning of banks branches in the state.”

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