Bank employee unions have again raised their demand for a five-day working week, stating that reducing the number of working days would help bankers who are at high risk of contracting the coronavirus disease due to their exposure to the public. The Indian Banks’ Association (IBA) in January had rejected the unions’ proposal for a five-day working week but offered a 19 percent pay hike to employees. At present, banks have holidays on the second and fourth Saturdays every month and on every Sunday. The All India Bank Employees Association in a statement said that the coronavirus threat is haunting bankers, where they are highly exposed to the general public dealing and now a five-day week is the requirement of the hour.

The association noted that while the whole world is carving for four-day working, the country is still looking for a way to opt for five-days banking. Talking to PTI, the president of All India State Bank Officers Federation, Deepak Sharma, said, “Moreover, it will also be a positive step in the direction of Digital India in conformity with PM’s vision. “

The working conditions in the Banks have been strenuous. Poor infrastructure, lack of adequate staff has made the officers work till late in the night, resulting in poor health, huge pressure on the officers, which culminates in serious work-leisure mismatches, lifestyle diseases and of late, repeated acts of suicides being committed by the officers of the Banks.”

Officers are called upon to work on holidays and Sundays, frequently disrupting the personal life, Sharma claimed.

Meanwhile, India today saw a record single-day jump of 40425 fresh COVID-19 cases pushing its tally to 1118043 while the death toll due to the infection rose to 27497, according to the health ministry data. 681 fatalities were reported in 24 hours. Despite surging fresh coronavirus cases, India’s COVID-19 case fatality rate is progressively falling and is currently at 2.49%, which is one of the lowest in the world, the Union Health Ministry said on Sunday.

700086 people having recovered COVID so far in India while the number of active cases stands at 390459. In 24 hours, 22664 patients were declared cured. The number of recovered COVID-19 patients exceeds active cases in India by 309627.