Port workers get 10.6% wage hike

Tamil Nadu: Around 600 workers go on indefinite strike at automotive manufacturing company Pricol

30 August 2018: More than 600 workers went on indefinite strike on 21 August 2018 under the banner of Kovai Mavatta Pricol Thozhilalar Sangam (KMPTS) affiliated to AICCTU at the Coimbatore factory of Pricol demanding:

  • Withdrawal of the illegal partial lock out against 143 workers.
  • Secret ballot elections to determine the majority union at the plant.
  • Immediate stop on the punishments, victimisation and denial of allowances/dues to all workers.

The lock-out of 143 workers is the management offensive to union’s demand of starting wage negotiations since the old agreement lapsed earlier this year and a new one ought to have come into effect from July 2018. However, the management has been abstaining from all negotiations with the KMPTS union.

Employees at state run ports win 10.6% wage hike

30 August 2018: The shipping ministry signed a new wage settlement agreement with employees at government run ports, under which workers and pensioners will receive a 10.6% hike in their basic and dearness allowance for a five-year period starting January 2017.

Around 32000 workers and 1.05 lakh pensioners will benefit from the new wage agreement.

Chhattisgarh: JK Paper Mill contract workers go on indefinite strike after management ignores 14-point charter of demands

26 August 2018: More than 4000 contract workers employed at JK Paper Mill’s Rayagada plant in Chhattisgarh went on indefinite strike pressing that management consider their 14-point charter of demand which includes rise in wages and allowances, regularisation of services of workers who have worked for more than 10 years and 10-day annual leave for women employees. Contract workers were forced to strike after management kept ignoring worker’s request regarding negotiation on the charter of demands for the last four months.

The management had earlier approached the High Court for a restraining order against the protesting workers. The High Court ordered against the management upholding workers’ right to peaceful protest.

Tamil Nadu: Doctors at CMCH demand pay parity with Central Government Staff

21 August 2018: Over 300 doctors of Coimbatore Medical Collage and Hospital (CMCH) went on a strike demanding pay and seniority parity with Central Government staff.  Currently, CMCH doctors get promoted at 8, 15, 17 and 20 years of service, while central government doctors get promoted on completion of 4, 9, 13 and 20 years respectively. Central employees enter pay-band four, super pay category on completion of 13 years of service and earn a basic salary of Rs. 1.23 lakh per month, which a state government doctor gets only after completion of 20 years of service.

Air India pays allowance to pilots after union threatens to strike

22 August 2018: After the Indian Commercial Pilot’s Association (ICPA) threatened the Air India management that pilots and cabin crew would report to the office for desk jobs, but abstain from flying duties if their flying allowances are not paid, the management jumped into action and cleared the dues for the month of June for all pilots and cabin crew on 20 August 2018.

Basic wage constitutes only 30% of the total earnings of the pilots and cabin crew workers whose main earnings comes from flying and other allowances. In the last six months, payment of wages and allowances of flying staff has been irregular due to Airline’s poor performance.

Telangana: Emergency Medical Technicians and Ambulance drivers approach Labour Department against GVK-EMRI management

20 August 2018: Emergency Medical Technicians (EMT) and Ambulance drivers employed on contract by the GVK-EMRI 108 Emergency services have raised a dispute with the Labour Department against illegal termination of services of 620 workers.

GVK-EMRI has been terminating workers in batches since the worker’s union put forth the demand to cut down on working hours of EMTs and ambulance drivers from the existing 12 hours to 8 hours and regular payment of wages.

West Bengal: Tea Plantation workers go on a three-day strike demanding wage hike

09 August 2018: More than 4 lakh tea plantation workers from around 370 tea plantations across the North Bengal region went on three-day strike beginning 07 August 2018 demanding a 20% hike in wages.

In 2014, 19 major trade unions came together to form an umbrella body demanding that the old system of negotiating wages every three years, prevalent since 1977, be discontinued and replaced with Minimum Wages Act for determining wages in tea plantations. The West Bengal government formed a wage committee in 2016 to look into the matter which has failed to reach a consensus ever since.

Currently, the minimum daily wage for a worker at the plantation is Rs.159, which includes a cash component along with payment in kind such as housing, ration, firewood etc., the unions have been demanding that the wages be raised to Rs.203. Meanwhile, succumbing to the protest WB government has proposed an interim wage hike to Rs. 176.

Maharashtra: Government Hospital staff hold three-day protest, demand filling of vacancies and a five-day work week

07 August 2018:  Workers employed in Class III and Class IV employment, attached to state run hospitals went on a three-day strike starting 07 August 2018 demanding implementation of the Seventh Pay Commission, increase in retirement age to 60 from 58, filling of vacancies, jobs for children or wife in the event of husband’s death while on duty, promotion based on further education, and five-day work week.

There are more than 10 Lakh class III and IV staff in Maharashtra of which nearly 6 Lakh are employed in Mumbai. The class III staff consists of clerks, staff nurses, while the class IV staff members consist of sweeper-cum-servants, lift men, security guards, and peons.

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