Two-day trade union strike kicks in, affects normalcy across country

Members of Central Trade Unions hold protests and block commuters in Bhubaneswar demanding minimum wages and social security schemes among others. Central Trade Unions called a 48-hour nationwide strike over several demands on January 8, 2019. Photograph:( ANI )

ANI Bhubaneswar, Odisha, India Jan 08, 2019, 10.38 AM (IST)

Scores of trade unions across the nation are on a two-day nationwide strike commencing Tuesday to protest against Central government's alleged anti-worker policies and unilateral labour reforms.

One of the major demands put forth by the protesters is to include enactment of the Social Security Act and setting of a minimum wage of Rs 24,000 for unorganised transport workers.

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The trade union strike affected normalcy across the country. In Bhubaneswar, protesters picketed and burnt tyres at a railway station as mark of their protest.

The impact of protest was intense in Kolkata, where agitators took to streets, disrupting office-time traffic.

The police soon swept into action and detained a couple of CPI-M workers for allegedly fanning violence in the region in the view of the trade union strike.

The protests are not only affecting normalcy in the metropolitan cities but other states too saw a similar sight.

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In Bengaluru, commuters were facing trouble going to offices as autorikshaws, cabs and buses are keeping off roads in view of the all-India strike.

In Karnataka also, people residing in Hubli, were seen walking with flags and festoons through the streets displaying their various demands and needs.

On a closer look, this two-day nationwide strike is not confined to the transport sector as thousands of people working in banking sector and other public sector companies and port and dock workers are also participating in the strike to highlight the growing price rise, economic crisis and unemployment across the country.

Moreover, farmers residing across the country under the aegis of the Left peasant wings have also threatened to observe gramin hartal, road roko against the failure of the Central government for not doing enough to address rural distress.

The strike has been called by a consortium of 10 central trade unions and has received support from organisations like the AITUC, CITU, HMS, AIUTUC, TUCC, AICCTU, along with employees in the banking and insurance sector.

Farm unions like All India Kisan Sabha (AIKS) and Bhumi AdhikarAndolan are also part of the strike.


 

Story highlights

The impact of protest was intense in Kolkata, where agitators took to streets, disrupting office-time traffic.