New Delhi: Normal life is likely to be affected in Bengaluru following a proposed two-day nationwide strike (Bharat Bandh), called by central trade unions in the country from January 8. The trade unions are protesting against the alleged repressive policies for workers adopted by the Narendra Modi-led BJP government. Ten trade unions who have jointly called for the nationwide general strike are INTUC, AITUC, HMS, CITU, AIUTUC, AICCTU, UTUC, TUCC, LPF and SEWA. The trade unions have supports of almost all major independent federations of central employees, state employees and the employees of banks, insurance, telecom, and other service sectors representing the workers and employees of all the industries and services including transport services, both in organised and unorganised sectors.

Following the band, buses and autos will stay off roads. However, app-based cab aggregators, airport taxis and Metro trains will operate in Bengaluru. Banking services across the state are likely to be affected in view of the strike.

Tapan Sen, general secretary of CITU (Centre of Indian Trade Unions), said that the public sector employees, unorganised sector workers, port and dock workers, bank and insurance employees are going to observe nationwide protest on January 8 and 9 against growing economic crisis, price rise and acute unemployment on the call of central trade unions and mass organisations. The CITU denounced the unilateral move of the government of India to amend the Trade Union Act 1926 in the name of bringing about “so-called transparency” and avoiding “duplicacy” as noted in the press briefing by the union cabinet.

Sen alleged that the proposed Trade Union (Amendment) Bill 2018 as cleared by the Cabinet is designed to impose conditions of slavery on the working people and totally abrogate trade union rights. “It is not merely labour reform, it is an all-out degeneration in the life of productive people in the whole economy,” Sen said. He alleged that under the regime of the Modi government a repressive atmosphere has been created for working class people.

“It is just not distress and destitution, there is an altogether a repressive atmosphere creating in the total uncertainty in the world of works,” Sen alleged.

CITU was critical of the Modi government’s policy of ‘Make in India’ and alleged that the government has been killing the work culture of the country’s public sectors by favouring major contracts of manufacturing works to private players.

Farmers across the country under the aegis of the Left peasant wings would join the two-day nationwide general strike. “AIKS and Bhumi Adhikar Andolan will observe ‘gramin hartal’, rail roko and road roko on January 8 and 9, the day trade unions are observing the nationwide general strike. This move is against the Modi government’s failure to address rural distress issues, to save rural farmers’ lands from the corporates. The farmers will extend all support to the ensuing general strike,” said Hannan Mollah, general secretary of the CPI(M)-affiliated All India Kisan Sabha.



(With agency inputs)