Tamil Nadu Electricity Board workers sign wage agreement

22 February 2018: Unions representing  workers of the Tamil Nadu Electricity Board (TNEB) signed a wage agreement which will benefit 80,000 workers of TNEB, Tamil Nadu Generation and Distribution Corporation Ltd (TANGEDCO) and Tamil Nadu Transmission Corporation Ltd (TANTRANSCO).

The wage agreement provides for a 2.57% increase in the wages along with a dearness allowance (DA) of 125% to be merged with the basic pay.

The raised pay hike will be effective from 1 October 2017, and the pay and grade pay drawn by the employees as on 1 January 2016 will be taken for calculating the increase.

As per the wage revision, the lowest grade employees in the rank of field assistant would get a increase in the range of Rs. 3,175 and Rs. 7,775 per month  and for the officer grade the increase will be in the range of  Rs. 5,800 and Rs. 27,375 per month .

Andhra Pradesh: Contract electricity workers on indefinite strike demanding regularisation

25 February 2018: 24,000 contract workers employed by GENCO (Andhra Pradesh Power Generation Corporation) and TRANSCO (Transmission Commission of Andhra Pradesh), have gone on an indefinite strike from 20 February 2018, under the banner of Andhra Pradesh Contract Electricity Employees Association demanding regularisation of service, abolition of contract employment and increase in pay from Rs.10,500 to Rs.18,500 per month.

Karnataka: Union seeks Global garment brand intervention in dipute over contract workers at Avery Dennison in Bengaluru

15 February 2018: Over 50 Contract workers were illegally terminated at the Avery Dennison plant in Bengaluru. Avery Dennison is a California-based supplier of labels, graphic tags to the apparel industry. The company has been refusing to regularize the contract workers who have been working in the company for several years.

The contract workers represented by the Garment and Textile Workers Union (GATWU) are protesting against illegal dismissals and for the right of the contract workers to join a union of their choice. The Union has called upon over a hundred global garment brands to intervene to resolve the dispute with Avery Dennison in a rare move by workers that put a spotlight on the unmapped part of the supply chain. The workers tried to negotiate with the management in recent months, wore black bands in protest and some boycotted the canteen but the management did not respond to the workers’ demands. Avery Dennison supplies labels to big global brands like H&M, Gap and Inditex.

Punjab: Sanitation workers end strike

28 February 2018: Sanitation workers of the Municipal Corporation of Bhatinda (MCB) who were staging a protest since 24 February 2018 demanding regularization of employment of 1500 contract workers, payments of their pensions according to the old pension scheme, and training and education for workers ended their strike on 27 February 2018, after assurance of the Municipal Corporation Commissioner of fulfilling their demands.

Government postpones 47th Indian Labour Conference indefinitely

21 February 2018: At short notice, without giving any reason, the 47th Indian Labour Conference (ILC), the highest tripartite forum of the country, scheduled for 26–27 February was indefinitely postponed by the government.

According to media reports, this was due to the threat by the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) to boycott the conference and the government’s apprehension of potential embarrassment. The other central trade unions together have been demanding that the government invite the Congress party-affiliated Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC) to the conference and protested the notification draft rules to allow the “fixed term employment” across all sectors that they allege would encourage contractualisation. These unions have called for an all-India general strike on 15 March to protest against the government’s anti-labour policies in which the BMS will not participate.

Maharashtra: Win for Bajaj Auto workers in Pune

5 February 2018: On 2 February, the Vishwakalyan Kamgar Sangathana, the union representing workers of  Bajaj Auto at their Akurdi and Chakan plants, reached a breakthrough in negotiations with management and ended the indefinite hunger strike launched four days earlier.

On 29 January, Bajaj Auto workers took action against management’s delaying tactics over unfair terminations and wage revision, and went on a hunger strike. There was massive participation of Bajaj autoworkers in the Chakan and Akurdi plants, along with their families.

Following negotiations between the workers and the management in the labour commissioner office on 2 February, management agreed to implement the wage rise at the Akurdi Plant retrospectively, and also agreed to collective bargaining with the union. Management also committed to reinstate six employees who were fired in 2016, as well as to start a discussion with the union about the eight workers who were sacked in 2013.

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