Bank unions said they will not participate in the 'Bharat Bandh' on Tuesday, even as they expressed solidarity with farmers protesting against the new farm laws. Farmer groups, camping at various Delhi border points for over a week, have called for a nationwide shutdown on Tuesday to protest against three recently enacted agriculture-related legislations.
All India Bank Officers' Confederation (AIBOC) General Secretary Soumya Datta said the union has expressed its solidarity with farmers but will not be participating in the Bharat Bandh called by them. Similarly, All India Bank Employees' Association (AIBEA) General Secretary C H Venkatachalam said the union would not go on strike or abstain from work but it supports the farmers' agitation.
Union members would wear black badges while on duty, stage protest after or before working hours and display placards before bank branches to support the cause of farmers of the country, Venkatachalam said, but added that banking operations will not be hit.
Thousands of farmers, mostly from Punjab and Haryana, are protesting against the new farm laws which they claim will dismantle the minimum support price (MSP) system, leaving them at the "mercy" of big corporate houses. Meanwhile, farmer leaders have said that nobody should be forced to observe 'Bharat Bandh' on Tuesday and that emergency services will be allowed. Several rounds of talks between the Centre and farmers have failed to break the deadlock.
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