Logistics

Corporatisation of ports: Water transport workers' federation protest on March 16

T E Raja Simhan | | Updated on: Dec 06, 2021

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Over 14,000 workers belonging to Water Transport Workers' Federation of India will observe a day-long nationwide protest at all major ports on March 16 against corporatisation of major ports.

Earlier five major unions -- All India Port & Dock Workers Federation (HMS), All India Port & Dock Workers Federation (HMS-W), Indian National Port & Dock Workers Federation (INTUC), Port, Dock & Water Front Workers' Federation (AITUC) and Water Transport Workers Federation - had decided to go for a nationwide protest at all the major ports on Monday.

However, at a conciliation meeting held by the Chief Labour Commissioner (Central) on Friday in New Delhi among the five federations, representatives of Shipping Ministry and the Indian Ports Association, four unions (except Water Transport Workers) had decided to withdraw from the protest.

This was following an assurance from the ministry that major ports will only be corporatised, and not privatised, said T Narendra Rao, General Secretary, Water Transport Workers.

"We did not agree to the decision at the meeting of other unions and will go ahead with the protest on March 16. Corporatisation is a prelude to privatisation of ports. This is not acceptable to us. Our workers will take leave on Monday for the protest," he told BusinessLine .

All the five federations had organised a nationwide protest on January 8 and submitted a memorandum against corporatisation to the respective port managements.

As there was no response from the Shipping Ministry, the federations had served a strike notice on February 20 to the management of all major ports and decided to go for an indefinite strike from March 9. This was deferred to March 16 as advised by the CLC (Central), he said.

Published on March 14, 2015
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