Kerala Bank limits union activities of staff; two pro-CPM union leaders transferred

Our Correspondent

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Thiruvananthapuram: Kerala Bank has limitd the union activities of the employees. It has been stated in the draft of latest amendments in the transfer rules that the trade unions shall not intervene in the transfer or any related decisions of the bank. Following this, two women state leaders of BEFI (Bank Employees Federation of India), an organisation with its allegiance to CPM, were transferred outside the district.

The transferred employees are BEFI women’s sub committee leaders C Geetha and B C Leena. Both of them were employed in the Kasargod unit. Leena was transferred to Kozhikode Medical College branch and Geetha to Pappinisseri branch in Kannur. The transfer order pointed out that the new decision should be immediately implemented.

Meanwhile, other union leaders claimed that the two women leaders were transferred as they took part in the Union General Council Convention by taking leave from the bank, instead of attending the meeting convened by the Chairman and CEO of the bank.

The BEFI had two separate units for the state and district level banks. The General Council of the Union was convened to decide on the merging of these unions as the district banks were merged with the state bank.

When the district banks existed, the employees were transferred within their respective districts. Even when Kerala bank was formed, the BEFI leaders had assured their members that there will be intra-district transfers only. Meanwhile, the women employees got transferred to other districts. Though BEFI requested to revise this decision, the bank refused to consider this.

The transfer rules pointed out that if any employee intervened to cancel the orders, it will be noted in the service book of that employee as violation of staff rules. This had kicked off severe discord within the union. One faction of the union members have decided to stay away from union activities if the issue is not addressed.

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