Over 10 trade unions and nearly 25 crore people will participate in a nationwide strike on 8th January to protest against the Centre’s “anti-people” policies. Several sectoral independent federations & associations including several bank unions are also slated to join the all-India general strike which has been called to protest against the Narendra Modi government’s recent banking reforms and labor policies.
Trade Union and others declare Bharath Band
The unions and employees are basically protesting against the Central government’s economic policies and recent banking amelioration. Few employees will be demanding- a raise in the minimum wage to Rs 21,000-Rs 24,000 per month; preventing the privatization of public sector undertakings; and removing the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA), National Register of Citizens (NRC) and National Population Register (NPR)- on Jan 8th.
Many accused that the BJP-led government at the Centre is focussed on snatching the workers’ rights instead of defending them. 10 central trade unions will keep the all-India strike on January 8, 2020. The members include Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), All India United Trade Union Centre (AIUTUC), Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS), Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), Labour Progressive Federation (LPF), United Trade Union Congress (UTUC), All India Central Council of Trade Unions (AICCTU), Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC) and Trade Union Coordination Centre (TUCC).
“We anticipate the support of not less than 25 crores of employees in the forthcoming National General Strike on 8 January 2020, to be followed by many more actions seeking reversal of the anti-worker, anti-people, anti-national policies of the Government,” said a statement.
The unions are also against privatization in railways, corporatization of 49 defense production units and forced merger of banks.
Various banks to remain closed
Bank workers belonging to five bank unions will also join the strike. It is likely to affect banking services on January 8. However, there would not be any impact on online transactions.
Upper unions in the banking sector have also called out to participate in the National Wide Strike declared by central trade unions on January 8, 2020.
In a report, the All India Bank Employees’ Association (AIBEA) general secretary CH Venkatachalam had last month said that employees of the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), co-operative Banks, Regional Rural Banks (RRB), Life Insurance Corporation of India and General Insurance sector will also accompany the strike.
“The Ministry of Labour has failed to assure any of the demands of workers which called a meeting on 2 January 2020. The character of the government is that of hatred towards labor as we interpret from its policies and actions,” the 10 central trade unions (CTUs) said in a joint statement.
Student union joining the strike
In the meantime, nearly sixty groups of students and selected office-bearers of some universities have also chosen to accompany the strike with a plan to raise voice against raised fee structure and commercialization of education.
Coming to the violence occurred in the country’s capital, the trade unions also denounced the JNU violence and related incidents in other university and showed their support with students and teachers all over India.
It is also reported that up to 175 farmers and agricultural workers unions will also spread its support to workers’ demands and observe 8 January as Gramin Bharat Bandh along with their charter of demands, sources said.
Here are the demands raised by trade unions.