Staff Reporter

ERODE: Employees of cooperative banks have urged the State Government to provide pension benefits.

At a meeting organised here on Friday as part of the nation-wide struggle, the employees said employees of cooperative banks where the only ones in the country for whom the Government had not provided pension.

The employees urged the State Government to provide pension of Rs.2,500 a month to all those who retired prior to December 31, 2007. They suggested that the amount could be paid as part of the banks monthly expenditure and claimed that it would not cost much. The second demand the employees put forth was income tax exemption for cooperative banks. They said the Union Government had in 2006 brought cooperative banks under the purview of income tax.

The employees wanted the Government to amend section 80B of the Income Tax act to exempt cooperative banks, which serve as a financing agency for many poor people. The employees also demanded further reduction in interest rate on farm loans, implementation of Vaidyanathan Committee report, among others.