CITU EXTENDS SUPPORT AND SOLIDARITY TO THE INDEFINITE STRIKE BY JUTE-MILL WORKERS IN WEST BENGAL FROM 1ST MARCH 2019 CALLED JOINTLY BY ALL THE 21 UNIONS IN THE INDUSTRY 

 

The Centre of Indian Trade Unions extends support and solidarity to the indefinite strike by 2.5 lakh workers of 59 Jute Mills in West Bengal from 1st March 2019. All the major 21 trade unions representing almost the entire jute mill workers have jointly decided to go in for strike to press for nine point demands, mostly relating to implementation of basic labour laws. The unions waited for years together for just implementation of the tripartite agreement of 2015 in the face of rampant violation of the agreement virtually with direct patronage of the state government run by Trinamool Congress(TMC).  The TMC Govt while turning a deaf ear to the complaints of violation of the tripartite agreement of 2015, has been directly patronizing the jute barons in carrying on indiscriminate and unlawful retrenchment /lay-off of workers, mass scale contractorisation while forcing the regular workers out of the Mill with the help of local TMC goons, nonpayment of statutory retirement dues of the retired workers like PF, gratuity, nonpayment of overdue dearness allowance to workers  etc.

In such a situation the jute mill workers and their unions have been compelled to decide for indefinite strike from 1st March 2019 against the loot and exploitation perpetrated on them by the Jute mill owners despite consistently earning high profit.

The jointly formulated charter of demands by 21 trade unions functioning in 59 jute mills of the state are inter alia, 1)Minimum Wage of Rs 18000 per month, 2) Pension at the rate of Rs 6000/- per month on retirement, 3) same wage for same and similar work for the contract and badli workers 3) Dearness Allowance of Rs 2.50 per point, 4) Regularisation of all Badli and special Badli workers, 5) immediate payment of long accumulated statutory  dues of the retired workers on account of PF and Gratuity with a guarantee for non-occurrence of such statutory dues in future, 6) clearance of all dues of the employers on account of ESI resulting denial of ESI benefits to workers, 7) introduction of grade and scale in respect of wages/salary, 8) regularization of all contract workers etc.

Preparation for the indefinite strike in Jute Mills is being carried on jointly by the unions and workers braving all atrocities and repression. CITU, while reiterating its support and solidarity to the struggle of the Jute Mill workers in West Bengal, calls upon the entire trade union movement  irrespective of affiliations and the working class in general to stand by the struggling jute mill workers and organize solidarity programmes in support of the striking workers.

Issued by
( Tapan Sen )
General Secretary

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