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Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) strongly denounces the imposition of GST on the essentials of life of people in general and working class in particular and demands for its immediate roll back.

The workers and the common people who were already put to severe hardship and made to suffer with the ever increasing price rise due to the destructive policies of the Modi led government through its engineered price rise of petroleum products and domestic LPG are now further attacked by this offensive.

Never in the history of independent India were the essential food items like rice, wheat, pulses etc and dairy items like curd, paneer, meat, fish, jaggery taxed. The peoples own savings on withdrawal from banks are taxed with 18% GST on bank cheques. The Consumer Price Index (CPI) (Industrial Workers) as of now does not fully reflect the actual price rise during the current inflationary phase reflecting the ongoing systemic crisis. Given this situation the present imposition and hikes on the essentials of life also never get reflected in the index whereby the annual VDA appreciation for the Industrial workers,be it at state or central sphere,will never fully compensate the price rise. While this is so for the organised sector, the worst hit will be the unorganised sector workers who have no regular income and are dependent on their day to day earnings.

The workers, MSMEs, and the economy which is yet to recover from the Covid pandemic and lockdown-imposed decline will be further put to strains leading to further shrinkage in the expenditure. This will further lead to job losses and rise in unemployment. The BJP governments at the centre and states which are reluctant to increase minimum wages and stop job-losses are imposing further burdens on the people. This is nothing but adding salt to injury.

CITU calls upon the workers and the people at large to resist these blatant attacks on their lives through the imposition of GST imposition on essential items and the price hikes with all force with enmasse participation in the fortnight campaign from August 1st to14thand culminating in huge demonstrations on 14th August,on the eve of 75th year of Independence,throughout the Nation.

Issued by 
Tapan Sen
General Secretary

Saturday, 30 April 2022 14:15

May Day Greetings

Thursday, 28 April 2022 07:17

Halt the LIC –IPO

Centre of Indian Trade Unions strongly condemns the Modi government’s anti-national move of opening the Initial Public Offering (IPO) of Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC). This is nothing but a step towards privatisation of the LIC and handing over the more than Rs 38 lakh crore assets owned by its 29 crore policy holders.

Notwithstanding its pseudo nationalistic postures, the BJP government has succumbed to the demands of the global and domestic so called ‘investors’ who have been lobbying since long to swallow this largest public financial institution. It is to be remembered that LIC was created by nationalisation of private insurance companies with a meagre investment of Rs 5 crore by the government of India and today has not gained the trust of the policy holders but also immensely contributed to the nation building. The BJP government led by Modi is so desperate to serve its corporate masters that it has arbitrarily cut down the valuation of LIC to less than half to facilitate the sale of LIC shares for a pittance.

The LIC employees have been consistently opposing the IPO in LIC. Crores of people, including the policy holders, as well as eminent citizens and all progressive sections of society have signed the memorandum opposing the LIC IPO. Massive campaigns against the move are going on across the country, particularly Kerala where the ‘Kerala United to Protect LIC’, which includes people from all sections, is spearheading the movement. The move smacks of its insensitivity to the consistent opposition to the LIC IPO and reflects the infamous bulldozer culture that has gained prominence.  The LIC employees have declared two hour walk out strike on 4th May, on the day the IPO is being opened, against the government’s measure.

CITU extends full support to the massive movement against LIC IPO and stands in solidarity with the LIC employees and agents fighting the IPO-that is contemplated with the ulterior motive of privatising this premier institution of our country that has been serving our people and the nation

CITU demands the government to halt this process and calls upon all its members and the entire working class to strongly oppose the LIC IPO and also mobilise the beneficiaries and the people against this anti national measure. It reiterates its call to strengthen united struggles against the neoliberal policies of the BJP government led by Modi, of which LIC IPO is a part.

Issued By
K.Hemalata
President

CITU Working Committee meeting started its three day session starting from today – 22nd April 2022 to 24th April 2022 at Bhakna Bhawan, Chandigarh. In the sidelines of Working Committee meeting, the meeting of the Working Committee Tier of All India Cordination Committee of Working Women was held at Cheema Bhavan. Com.Mercykutty Amma , Vice – President of CITU, presided over the meeting. CITU General Secretary Com.Tapan Sen, delivered the inagural speech. The National Convenor Com.A.R.Sindhu presented the report. After the delebration the report was adopted. It was decided that 12th National Convention of All India Cordination Committee of Working Women, will be held at Kolkata on 21st and 22nd of May 2022. With the concluding speech of Com.Hemalata the Working Women Coordination Committee meeting ended.

The formal inaguration of the plenary session of CITU Working Committee started with the flag hoisting by the President Hemalata at Bhakhna Bhawan, Chandigarh followed by the floral tributes to the martyrs column and also to Com.Lenin portrait on his 152nd birth anniversary. Com.Tapan Sen, General Secretary CITU proposed the committes for the smooth conduct of the buisness of the working committee, the committeess are accepted by the all working committee members. Welcoming the  members, reception committee Chairperson Comrade Usha Rani emphasised on revolutinary leagacy of Punjab in general and Chandigarh in particular. She said after the formation of CITU IN 1970, Chandigarh was the fisrt place to hoist CITU flag in Pfizer pharma multinational company alongwith some other units, Chandigarh was the main centre of Trade Union Movement in Parwanoo, Pinjore, Surajpur, Panchkula etc, and center of great struggles of employees of Punjab, Haryana and central govt. employees. She reminded during days of khalistani terroism many of CITU leaders in Mohali, Kharar, Derabasi etc. were eliminited by terroists but CITU flag was kept high.

While delivering the Presidential address, CITU President Comrade K Hemalata  thanked Punjab State Committee of CITU for hosting and making very good arrangements for this important CITU Working Committee meeting. She congratulated the working class of the country, who have participated in the strike and the huge demonstrations, rallies, picketing, road and rail blockades despite the threats, intimidation and victimisation by the employers and the corporate servile governments. She thanked thank the SamyuktaKisanMorcha for reiterating their support to the general strike and calling for ‘Rural Hartal’. In several states, members of our fraternal organisations of peasants and agricultural workers, AIKS and AIAWU have actively participated in the campaign as well as the protest programmes on the days of the strike. She said, This strike on 28-29 March was the 21st country wide general strike after the official advent of neoliberalism in our country, in addition to innumerable sectoral strikes. What we need to introspect when we analyse this strike, is, how far have we, who have been in the forefront in the planning as well as executing all these strikes starting from the first one, have been able to raise the class consciousness of the working class of our country about the character of the present society, the need to change it and the role of the working class in it? What were the efforts that we have made towards achieving this and what are the results? Our examination of the strike should be on these lines. She added, This strike is part of the global struggles and strikes of the working class. Workers in almost all the countries in the world are fighting to improve their conditions and regain their hard won rights, which are under attack by the international finance dictated neoliberal policies followed by the pro corporate governments in their countries. Hemalata said, The world could not come out of the global crisis of 2008-09 when the Covid pandemic struck and pushed the world into deeper crisis. Job losses, falling incomes and deteriorating working conditions for vast majority of the toiling people has brought down their purchasing power. Neo-liberalism’s prescriptions ostensibly to address the crisis but meant for profitmaximisation, themselves, create conditions for a protracted capitalist crisis. Their focus on intensifying exploitation of the working people fails to improve the purchasing power of the people, depresses demand and curtails growth. 

 

The Centre of Indian Trade Unions emphatically condemns the BJP Govt of Haryana for unleashing repressive measures against the Haryana Roadways workers for their massive participation in the two days countrywide general strike on 28-29 March 2022 at the call of Joint Platform of Trade Unions. Well before the strike, the State Govt started issuing threat of dire consequences and building hurdles to dissuade and prevent the roadways workers from joining the strike action. Haryana Roadways workers, quite consistent with their fighting tradition joined enmasse in strike action on both the days, rendering all attempts of the State Govt to break the strike an absolute failure.

The brutal vindictive face of the BJP Govt in the state came out with its fangs and claws as the Govt pounced upon the striking workers in vengeance with series of vindictive actions. Numerous FIRs have been filed in the name of many workers; six leading workers were arrested and sent to custody; numerous charge sheets were issued on flimsy allegations not only against the workers but also against some of the Officials.

CITU denounces such brutalities and vindictive actions by the Haryana Govt against the workers of state-owned Roadways Corporation for exercising their constitutional right of going on strike with due notice. CITU, while hailing the brave roadways workers for their successful strike action, demands upon the State Govt to withdraw all charge sheets and vindictive measures on the workers and officials immediately. CITU also extends its whole hearted support to the Haryana Roadways workers’ struggle braving the atrocities and calls upon the working people to stand in solidarity with the Haryana Roadways Workers’ movement against victimisation and for justice.

Issued by
(Tapan Sen)
General Secretary

The Indian seafarers expressed their solidarity in support of the two day All India General Strike on 28th and 29th of March 2022, call given by all the Major Central Trade Unions of India, across the globe, some from the mid oceans and also and some from the ports across the globe and also from different parts of our country.

Forward Seaman’s Union of India got inspired through this strike and expressed their solidarity for the two days All India General Strike as seafarers are the lifeline of worlds 95% of the logistics (Cargo Movement) and played a vital role in Covid – 19 pandemic

Seafarers got recognized as key workers but still the two main important charter of demands for the seafarers, who gave solidarity for this strike are

1. Regularization of Jobs,

2. Pension for all the retired seafarers.

These demands are the burning issues in front of the whole Indian seafarers, while giving solidarity to the All India General Strike seafarers at mid ocean and at shore expressed their pain by holding placards, posters, banners, rallies, dharnas etc.

At present the Indian seafarers who are working for the global shipping giants, which are plying in the mid oceans and also docked in ports also expressed their solidarity for the ongoing All India General Strike from the places around the globe like China, Singapore, Sri Lanka, Maldives, Malaysia, Iran etc.

In India, seafarers who are working in offshore and home trade vessels also expressed their solidarity in support of the ongoing All India General Strike from different parts of the country i.e. from Vizag, Paradeep, Port Blair, Haldia, Salya, Bombay, Mangalore, Madras etc.

Even the retired and also the seafarers who are in leave also expressed solidarity in this ongoing All India General Strike from different parts of the country like Earnakulam, Kannur, Kasargod, Port Blair, Madras, Tuticorin, Paradeep, Haldia, Allahabad, Nadia, Kolkata, Mumbai, Delhi, Patna, Ranchi, Visakhapatnam etc.

Issued By
Manoj Yadav
General Secretary

 

CITU salutes the working people for making the General Strike success…..

Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) congratulates the workers for their magnificent response and overwhelming participation in the first day of the Two days’ General Strike called by the Joint Platform of Central Trade Unions, Independent Sectoral Federations/ Associations on 28th & 29th March, 2022. Hundreds of millions of workers participated in the strike and millions joined the demonstrations held today all over the country. This historic strike call was given not merely on immediate demands of the workers but against the anti-national destructive policies of Central government.

This General Strike turned into a bandh in many states particularly in Kerala and Tripura and also in several districts of Tamilnadu, Haryana, West Bengal and Assam as the publictransport, both government and private, came to a halt. Thousands of people participated in the road/ rail blockades in numerous places.Factories, shops, offices and commercial establishments wore a deserted look.In all major industrial centres and hubs across the country the strike was massive. Despite the threats like promulgation of ESMA, eight day wage cut notices etc, the working people responded massively to the call of CTUs to save the people; save the nations.

As per the reports received from different states and industries up to the afternoon of 28th March 2022, strike was observed in massive way in the major industrial centres in Maharashtra, Tamilnadu, West Bengal, Delhi, Telangana, Karnataka and Haryana. The Tuticorin VOC Port and Paradip Port the strike was total and it was substantial in other areas. The PSUs like Vizag Steel and BHEL units at Trichy and Ranipet were paralysed due to the strike. In the coal mining sector, strike was more than 60% on the average with Singareni Collieries in Telangana witnessing almost 100per cent strike. Strike in Power Grid was unprecedented; 100% strike in Southern Region II covering Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, Puducherry and in the North Eastern Region covering 7 states – Assam, Nagaland, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Arunchal Pradesh and Tripura, and Eastern Region II covering Odisha, Sikkim and West Bengal. Oil/Refinery sector, LPG plants also witnessed massive strike action in Assam and all the north eastern states and also at Kochi and Mangalore.

The strike was total in the insurance, massive in banks. There was massive participation of the central and state government employees in the strike throughout the country particularly in postal, income-tax and other major departments. State government employees’ strike was also substantial in Kerala, Haryana, Punjab, Tripura, Tamil Nadu, Jharkhand and Bihar and partial in other states. BSNL workers also joined the strike in large numbers.

The strike in the private manufacturing units in Bengaluru industrial area like Bommasandra, Bidapi, Peenyan, Whitefield, Hoskote, Dabaspet industrial areas (Karnataka) – strike was total. Similarly Cherlapalli industrial area near Hyderabad was totally closed. The MNCs like Sandvik and Toshiba in the Telangna also witnessed complete strike. In the industrial areas of Tamilnadu including Chengalpattu, and Kanchipuram also, strike was almost total. The Road Transport including public transport, auto, taxi, OLA and Uber are not plying in many states.  

The powerloom and spinning mill workers in Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Tamilnadu and Haryana joined the strike almost entirety.

Crores of unorganised sector workers, including construction workers, beedi workers, head load workers, private transport workers struck work and participated in the demonstrations. Around 80 lakh scheme workers including anganwadi, ASHA and mid-day-meal workers played a frontline role in making strike in the concerned sector almost total. Shop employees, traditional sector workers including plantation, coir workers etc, participated in the strike in a big way. These striking workers continued day long road blockade and rail-blockade demonstrations in numerous locations throughout the country giving the general strike a greater visibility.Peasants and agricultural workers along with the members from various mass organisations also participated in those blockade demonstrations. In several states rural hartal was observed by the peasants and agricultural workers

It is expected, strike is going to be even bigger on the second day, on 29th March 2022. While congratulating the working class again for their huge response, CITU calls upon the working class to make the second day’s strike even more massive reflecting their anger against the devastating anti people and anti national policies of the Modi led BJP government of corporate-communal nexus at the centre. This is necessary to Save the Nation and Save the People.

Issued by 
( Tapan Sen )
General Secretary

Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) condemns the  hike of Rs.25 per litre of diesel for the bulk buyers. CITU opposes it vehemently as it is  another attack on the State Transport Undertakings and other bulk users, the burden of which will be passed on to the mass of the people using public transports and such other services.

The BJP Govt at the Centre which is all through imposing burdens on the people has initiated this another hike which shall be an unbearable burden with already spiralling prices all around eating into the common people's earnings. It will further worsen the lives of ordinary people with Transport costs also rising enormously in the current phase of stagflation.

It is another form of attack on the Public sector undertakings, particularly on Public Transport Undertakings as a part of its multi dimensional offensive to dismantle the public sector as a whole through privatisation or its new avatar Asset Monetisation Pipeline. 

The CITU urges the Modi Govt to ensure withdrawal of such a massive hike immediately. 

CITU appeals to all the  public transport workers and mass of the people to join the forthcoming General Strike on March 28th and 29th and make it a success as a befitting reply against this  price raise and in defence of Public road transport.

(Tapan Sen)
General Secretary

CITU registers its protest with indignation against the order of the Kerala High Court restraining the workers’ unions in Cochin Refinery, Bharat Petroleum Corporation Ltd (BPCL), going for strike on 28 & 29th March in deference to the call of National Convention held on 11th November, 2021 at New Delhi organized by the Ten Central Trade Unions and scores of Industrial/Sectoral Federations/Associations against the anti-people and anti-worker policies of the Central government.

The Court has passed such blatant order which virtually banned the strike in the wake of the petitions filled by the BPCL, Cochin Refinery which unfortunately took shelter in the section 22 (d) of Industrial Dispute Act that prohibits strike or lock-out during the pendency of the conciliation proceedings.

It is irony that strike demands are nothing to do with petitioner - company to conciliate rather the demands are more connected to the anti-national policies of the Central Government to sell off all the Public Sector Enterprises like BPCL to the private in utter disregard to the public interest.

We, while urging upon the Hon’ble Kerala High Court to recede the ban order, call upon the working class of the country to make the general strike a magnificent success so as to reverse the anti-national policies of the Central government to save the nation; to save the Public Sector Undertakings; to save the people.

Issued By
Tapan Sen
General Secretary

Saturday, 12 March 2022 19:37

CITU DENOUNCES EPF INTEREST RATE REDUCTION

In another anti-worker move of the BJP led Union Government, the representatives of the Government as well as employers'  in the Central Board of Trustees of EPFO have urged for the reduction of EPF interest rate. So the board has decided to recommend for reduction of the interest rates from current 8.5% to 8.1%. The Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) denounces that so called "majority" decision of the board to recommend the reduction of  EPF interest rates for the financial year 2021-22.

All Employees’ representatives in the Central Board of Trustees of EPFO representing the Central Trade Unions including CITU have opposed it in unison in the Board meeting held at Guwahati, on March 11th and 12th of 2022, inspite of which the Board has decided to recommend to reduce the interest rate based on the Government and Employers’ representatives proposal.

The argument of the Union Government is to treat it on par with interest rates of any other deposits in banks can never be acceptable as EPF is a recurring life time savings of the employees meant for their future as part of social security.  This has to be differentially treated than any other deposits linked interest rates in banking sector.

CITU calls on the workers to make success of the forth coming General Strike on March 28th & 29th against the anti working class policies of Modi led BJP Government as a befitting reply to the anti-people and anti-worker policies including EPF  interest rates  reduction which is the lowest in the last 44 years.

 

(Tapan Sen)
General Secretary.

 

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