The banking industry is flourishing in Pakistan for last many years. The competition between different financial institutions is a very healthy sign. I am a regular visitor of a number of banks for my day to day errands. I say the profession of banking looks charming from outside but the bankers suffer due to their exhaustive working hours in a highly taxing and sensitive environment. Even a minor error can cause a loss of millions, which could mean ignominy and unemployment or both. The bankers work in a highly competitive market yet the management of each bank expects their staff to deliver on very high deposit targets set in almost every major branch. The staff of struggles hard to attract depositors but due to the competitive rates of return in the market, they often do not succeed. The management does not consider high competitiveness of the market as a valid excuse for failure and the axe falls on those who have fail to deliver. In some financial institutions, the bankers are being paid handsomely but in others, the salaries are lower. The working hours are 9 to 5 but only technically for it takes way more time to balance the ledgers of accounts and other closing procedures and a banker generally reaches home late at night. I say the Governor State Bank of Pakistan and Finance Minister must seriously consider the plight of bankers and their working hours should be decreased or may be Saturday should also be declared an off day for banks besides Sunday. Bankers must also be provided with job security that the government officials enjoy. The PPP led government is always very concerned about the rights of workers and employees. They should do something for the bankers too. -KASHIF IMTIAZ, Gujranwala, March 8.