Lay down arms, take up bank jobs. This seems to be the Government’s underlying message to the youth in the eight States affected by Left-wing extremism and militancy-prone Jammu and Kashmir.
How? Seven public sector banks have been tasked with the responsibility of coaching the youth to become bankers in the nine States.
The Government has asked the banks to take up this challenging project as it will not only wean the youth from anti-national influences but also help them get over the problem of finding personnel to work in these nine States.
The banks are coaching candidates to take the common written examination (CWE) for the clerical cadre. The exam is scheduled to be conducted by the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) in mid-December.
A total of 66 districts in nine States have been identified as reeling under red-terror and militancy. Socio-economic development of the districts could, to some extent, counter these twin threats.
Allahabad Bank has been given the responsibility of coaching the youth in some districts in Jharkhand.
The banks which have been assigned the responsibility for other States are: Andhra Bank (Andhra Pradesh); Bank of Maharashtra (Maharashtra); Central Bank of India (Madhya Pradesh, Bihar and Chhattisgarh); UCO Bank (Odisha); United Bank of India (West Bengal); and Punjab National Bank (Jammu and Kashmir).
“We are conducting six-day coaching programmes for the youth in the districts allotted to us so that they can take the common written examination,” said Raj Kiran Rai, General Manager, Central Bank of India.
To overcome the problem of finding clerical personnel to work in branches in the hinterland, recruitments in public sector banks are now being done State-wise so that locals get to work closer home.
According to Finance Ministry estimates, over the next couple of years, the 21 public sector banks and the five associate banks of the State Bank of India will have 84,489 vacancies across the three cadres — officers (29,122); clerks (43,045) and sub-staff (12,322).