Even in its days as Bank of Bengal (the primary component of Presidency Banks) the management of State Bank of India was hardly ever that indifferent and callous towards welfare of the workforce as it has been obtaining for quite a long time now. The Government of India too is equally indifferent, the same Government of India that is generous enough on demands of their own employees. The reason is beyond any comprehension. The burning issues like pension to retirees and compassion based appointments in the case of deceased employees are in fact the ones to be given top priority but what is happening actually is just the reverse. The retirees and the dependents of the deceased employees are all for a do or die struggle declaring a Jehad for the purpose as per feedback received through this blog –their preference is to die a martyr instead of a destitute. Any cry in a tattered democracy, they feel, is nothing more than a moan in the vacuum. Compassionate appointments started in State Bank of India in later 1960s but for no valid a reason they were stopped at the end of the 20th century. The new government under BJP rule re-introduced it with effect from 5th August’2014 but with stipulations which hardly mean any thing at the level of the dependents of the deceased employees. Banks are twisting and misinterpreting the provisions to their advantage instead of extending some tangible relief to the dependents. Politics pervades disallowing any solace to the dependents. The heartless managers in the government took care to secure a bumper publicity by introducing the new rules at the cost of the aggrieved dependents callously denying them some source of sustentation at the practice level. On an average a bank employee serves for 40 years indefatigably after which they are treated as a dead horse with a paltry sum of pension and too inadequate a relief in the event of their death or incapacitation with the result that their dependents are left with no option but to lead a life of penury as an abandoned dead stock. Politics, it appears, has its foothold in the courts of law too creating hurdles in any pro employees decisions. The glaring example of this is the Supreme Court of India directing the Delhi High Court to give their decision on pension issues latest within six month but it’s now a matter of years and nothing tangible is allowed to emerge. The Masters (one may call them the monsters too) both in the government and the banks mainly including Sate Bank of India have a fancy to serve the interests of the rich and not those whose agonies laden eye lids overflow with tears. What could be the option left to the aggrieved lot? Dharna, demonstration, gherao and the like are obviously the recognised tools for the purpose and they can be resorted to any time or say what may suit the government more is self immolation by the aggrieved ones in front of the Parliament of India. Possibly the affected victims are very close to going ahead for the last. Do you hear this, ye the managers in the government and the Banks?
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