Udayavni Special

’25 crore people likely to participate in Bharat bandh on Jan 8′


Team Udayavani, Jan 6, 2020, 7:40 PM IST

New Delhi: Ten central trade unions on Monday said around 25 crore people will participate in a nationwide strike on January 8 to protest against the government’s “anti-people” policies.

Trade unions INTUC, AITUC, HMS, CITU, AIUTUC, TUCC, SEWA, AICCTU, LPF, UTUC along with various sectoral independent federations and associations had adopted a declaration in September last to go on a nationwide strike on January 8, 2020.

“We expect participation of not less than 25 crore of working people in the forthcoming National General Strike on January 8, 2020, to be followed by many more actions seeking reversal of the anti-worker, anti-people, anti-national policies of the government.

“The ministry of labour has failed to assure on any of the demands of workers which called a meeting on January 2, 2020. The attitude of the government is that of contempt towards labour as we construe from its policies and actions,” the 10 central trade unions (CTUs) said in a joint statement.

About 60 organisations of students and elected office bearers of some universities have also decided to join the strike with an agenda to raise voice against increased fee structure and commercialization of education, it said.

The trade unions condemned the JNU violence and similar incidents in other university campuses and expressed their solidarity with students and teachers all over India.

The unions also expressed displeasure over no Indian Labour Conference being held since July 2015, codification of labour laws and privatisation of PSUs.

“As many as 12 airports are already sold out to private hands, 100 per cent sale of Air India is already decided, decision to sell BPCL taken, BSNL-MTNL merger announced and 93,600 telecom workers already thrown out of jobs under the garb of VRS (voluntary retirement scheme),” it added.

The so called trade unions are working at the behest of Opposition political parties. They don’t want India to progress. They just want vote bank politics. Shame on us for this kind of situation.

The unions are also against privatisation in railways, corporatisation of 49 defence production units and forced merger of banks.
Joint platform of more than 175 farmers and agricultural workers unions will extend its support to workers’ demands and observe January 8 as Gramin Bharat Bandh along with their charter of demands, they added.

Below are 10 key points about the strike:

1. The unions have a total of 14 demands, some of the major ones being scrapping of the proposed labour reforms. The other key demands include a raise in the minimum wage to Rs 21,000 to Rs 24,000 per month, stopping the privatisation of public sector undertakings, halting the forced merger of banks and withdrawing the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR).

2. The strike is being supported by All India United Trade Union Centre (AIUTUC), Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS), Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), All India Central Council of Trade Unions (AICCTU), Labour Progressive Federation (LPF), United Trade Union Congress (UTUC), Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC) and Trade Union Coordination Centre (TUCC).

3. Hospitals, pharmacies and emergency services will function as usual.

4. Availability of milk, fruits, vegetables and other basic items will not be affected.

5. Holiday has not been declared for schools and colleges yet, however, deputy commissioner of each district has been asked to take a call on the matter.

6. Buses will stay off roads and other public transport will be affected.

7. Bengaluru Metro will function normally.

8. ATMs will remain open.

9. Central and state government offices will remain open.

10. Banks, including cooperative banks, will remain closed.

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