As per a Hindu Businessline report, the Indian Banking Association (IBA) has taken a step closer to implementing a five-day workweek for banks. This decision comes after persistent representations and petitions by various bank employee unions over the past year.
IBA’s Decision and the Road Ahead
During a meeting held on July 28, the IBA, which serves as a representative body for the managements of Indian banks, reportedly accepted the industry’s demand to declare all Saturdays as bank holidays. This proposal has been forwarded to the Ministry of Finance for its final approval.
If sanctioned, bank branches will operate from Monday to Friday, potentially with an extended daily work duration of 45 minutes. While the IBA has yet to officially confirm this development, top executives from both private and public sector banks have indicated that the proposal to declare Saturdays as holidays received the green light during the IBA’s recent meeting.
The Digital Shift in Banking
The banking industry’s inclination towards a five-day workweek is bolstered by the increasing digitalisation of banking services. A significant 70% of daily cash-related transactions are now conducted digitally, reducing the necessity for six-day banking.
Currently, bank branches operate on the first, third, and fifth Saturdays of each month, with the second and fourth Saturdays designated as holidays. However, it’s worth noting that until 2015, banks functioned six days a week, encompassing all Saturdays of the month.
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