Different trade unions, bank employees and Anganwari workers, today held protests in support of their demands including job security for unorganized workers, implementation of labour laws and Minimum Wages Act and release of salary and arrears.
Central Trade Unions including BMS, INRUC, AITUC, CITU and HMS, organized a joint protest rally in support of their demands including price rise and universalization of Public Distribution System, job protection, enforcement of labour laws, social security for unorganized workers, disinvestment in PSU’s and minimum wages. The protest rally was led by CITU state president and MLA, M Y Tarigami in which hundreds of activists holding placards and banners participated in the rally that took off at Bikram Chowk and culminated at Indira Chowk.
The activists raised slogans against the government for its anti-people decisions and demanded bonus, Provident Fund and increase in quantum of gratuity. While addressing the media, Tarigami demanded curbing of price rise, universalization the PDS and complete ban on speculation. He criticised frequent hike in the prices of essential products, which lead to the overall inflationary trends, especially in food items. Speaking about the situation in the state, Tarigami said that rampant corruption is prevalent in the state, which is bound to play havoc with the state. He added that more that 93% of country’s workforce is in the unorganized sector but they have been kept outside the purview of most of the labour laws and do not have any protection in respect of working hours, minimum wages and above all kind of job security despite contributing around 65% to the country’s GDP. He further said that the unemployment has reached alarming rate and demanded that labour laws be implemented in the state and minimum wages should be paid to workers. He also stressed upon the state government to increase wages and improve the working condition of workers.
Tarigami further appealed to the different unions in the state to come close to intensify their struggle for fulfilling their demands.
A similar joint protest rally of All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEA) including AICTU, TUCC, UTUC, LPR and SEWA was also held at Jammu in which activists raised slogans against the anti-labour and anti-worker policies of the government.
The activists demanded concrete measures to contain price rise including strict enforcement of all basic labour laws, removal of all ceiling on payment and eligbility of bonus, Provident Funds besides increase in the quantum of Gratuity.
Addressing the gathering, AIBEA general secretary, comrade Arun Kumar Gupta said, “Five lakh bank employees under the banner of AIBEA support the demands of central unions. The association also opposed the Khandelwal Committee recommendations. The association also demanded stringent measures to recover loans and immediate settlement of their demands that are pending for a long time.
Meanwhile, Anganwadi Workers Welfare Association (AWWA) also held a dharna at Press Club demanding release of salary/arrears and declaring of supervisors as government employees.
The activists raised slogans in support of their long pending demands. While speaking on the occasion, Singh demanded that Anganwadi workerss and helpers should be declared government employees and promotion orders should be issued for the surpervisors as per seniority list and rule. He further demanded fuel charges at Rs. 300/ pm, rent payment, TA/DA payment for attending meeting, Teaching Allowances, uniform supply, pension and insurance without delay.
AJKHGWA also organised a protest rally to highlight their genuine demands especially the enhancement of salary at par with Punjab home guards.
While addressing, HGWA president Kamla Sharma said that the Punjab government has been kind enough to provide better salaries to its home guards whereas the guards in J&K are being paid only 545/- per month which is injustice with J&K home guards. She further appealed to all the political leaders to render their support for those who have been performing their duties for the last more than six years