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The long wait for submission of Final Charter of Demands by UFBU is over. The matter has been under discussion now for more than one year. At AllBankingSolutions.com also we have opened forum for suggestions for various items that bankers would have liked to include in the Charter of Demands. There was excellent response and good number of suggestions were received and these were available to everybody for reading.
On 30th October 2012, UFBU submitted two charter of demands - one by 4 officers unions and other one by 5 workmen's unions. We uploaded the same on our website on the same day and thousands of our readers have downloaded the same in last few days. Thousands of other bankers must have received the same from various other sources. We have also uploaded separately Highlights of these two Charter of Demands. We are sure, original Charter of Demands must have been read or at least scanned by all of you owing to curiosity as to what is in store at the end of this Xth BPS or 7th Joint Note discussions.
I am not sure what has been the reaction of my fellow bankers after reading this Charter of Demands by officers unions and workmen unions. I am shocked to read these two documents. If you are not shocked, I would request you to read the Charter of Demands once again after reading both parts of article.
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I will discuss various issues in two parts. This is the first part of my views. I am sure, my articles will be frowned upon by many union leaders and their close associates, specially those who were associated with the drafting of these documents. For last few days, I was wondering whether I should really write this article and call for wrath of so many leaders. Initially I thought of dropping this idea. However, soon I realized that I should not remain silent spectators as many serving bankers are forced to remain mute purely because union leaders bully them and threaten to transfer such honest bankers. Therefore, I apologize to union leaders for this frank article and hope they will mend the way wage revision negotiations have gone during earlier BPS.
A mere hurried look at the contents of Charter of Demands will bring to light the inconsistencies in two documents - intra documents and inter-document. It appears there is no coordination among the leaders, and these documents are merely collection of the demands by different groups and put under one document without even reading the same in one stretch. No logic has been applied in raising these demands. It appears that no ground level meetings were held to discuss the issues thread bare, and these documents have been prepared in great hurry to meet the deadline of 1st November 2012.
Bankers have been expecting that number of brain storming session by top leaders of nine unions will take place before finalising the Charter of Demands as it is a matter of wage revision for over 9 lakh officers and workmen. After reading the document, I am 100% sure that not even one serious brain storming session was held between Nine Union leaders, forget about a series of such sessions. If the leaders of these nine unions still claim that I am wrong, let them see the following inconsistencies and re-think as to what they have done to their cadres by betraying their faith.
(a) Officers unions have asked for scales to be fixed by drawing parallel from 6th Pay commission and introduction of Grade Pay. Workmen unions have not even talked about Grade Pay. Whether this issue was ever discussed at a joint meeting and if so why a joint strategy was not formed for negotiations with IBA.
(b) Workmen unions have demanded DA on CPI 2001 =100 index series, but officers unions have not asked for any change in Index Series.
(c) Both Charters talk about higher neutralization of DA. Workmen unions have asked it to be 110% for clerks and 120% for subordinate staff. Officers have asked it to at 125%. Why a joint rate was not agreed upon. What is the logic that clerks need neutralisation of DA lower than both sub-ordinate staff as well as officers?
(d) Officer's union have demanded that HRA on capital cost basis should be 200%, whereas their poor workmen brothers have asked only at 150% of normal HRA. I have failed to understand the logic.
(e) Officer's union have demanded Casual Leaves to be increased to 15 days, whereas workmen's union have asked for 18 days CL;
(f) Officers Unions have demanded 10 days Restricted Holidays whereas workmen's unions are silent on this issue
The above are some of the glaring inconsistencies between two documents on issues that are consistently on the same footing for officers and workmen staff for long time. These issues should have been sorted out before drafting the Charter of Demands so that it really looks that it is a joint effort by Officers and Workmen. Certainly, on many other issues like service conditions, bonus, overtime, there can be different demands by two classes of unions.
Thus, a first reading of these Charter of Demands gives a clue to IBA that there is no joint effort by Officers and Workmen unions, and IBA will exploit the same during negotiations.
The above clearly shows that union leaders who were associated with joint efforts to put up a Charter of Demands jointly, totally lacked vision and did not apply their mind for drafting a document which is going to be lifeline for 9,00,000 serving bankers and lakhs of retired bankers for at least next five years. I do not remember a single instance in my career when any officer working under me, who was given a task, placed a note with such inconsistencies or flaws. I think the level of the officers in banks is far higher than the maturity shown in these documents. I wonder how come, the leaders of nine top most unions can be so indifferent in finalizing such an important document.
I will write more about these documents in Part II of the article.
Full Charter of Demands by Workmen Unions - AIBEA, NCBE, BEFI, INBEF, NOBW