(In Pics) Bharat Bandh: Mixed response in South India

Subscribe to Oneindia News

Thiruvananthapuram/Bengaluru/Chennai, Sep 2: Essential services such as banking and transport have been hit today as 10 central trade unions go on one-day nationwide strike, protesting against "anti-worker" changes in labour laws and the Centre's "indifference" to their demands for better wages.

"The strike is on. We are getting good response. More information will pour in after sometime. Around 90 per cent workers at BHEL's plant in Tiruchirapalli have not reported at work in the morning shift," Centre for Indian Trade Unions (CITU) General Secretary Tapan Kumar Sen told PTI.

Bandh

Kerala: ISRO under seige

The 24-hour-long strike called by trade unions to oppose the NDA government's "anti-labour" policies and demand better wages, turned out to be a total shut down in Kerala.

While public transport service across the state was not operating, private vehicles were seen on the roads.

Barring the BJP's trade union wing Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS), all other leading unions have joined the strike in Kerala.

The trade union workers led by former CPI-M legislator V. Sivankutty blocked the main central garage of the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Friday morning.

[Read: Live: Bharat Bandh: Banking came to a standstill in Telangana ]

Not a single vehicle operated to pick up the majority of the 6,000 work force attached to three units here.

In the past, the ISRO has never allowed such strikes to affect their work as their vehicles move in convoys with gun totting Central Industrial Security Force (CISF) security guards.

"The ISRO has always threatened people who organise strikes using the gun totting CISF security guards and hence we decided to block the main garage where 260 buses and 400 cars are parked. We will go away the moment the ISRO officials say they declare a holiday," said Sivankutty.

In Kochi, the police had to intervene after protesters attacked Call Taxi service vehicles, which arrived to pick and drop passengers at the railway stations.

The IT hub -- Infopark Campus -- at Kochi also reported a thin attendance, with many IT professionals finding it tough to arrive in the campus.

In Thrissur, the police intervened when BMS workers who reported for work at the Apollo Tyres factory in Perambara, were stopped by other union workers.

In north Kerala, the strike appears to have had an impact as the only place of activity was the Kozhikode railway station.

While the three international airports operations were going on, markets and malls across the state were closed.

Tamil Nadu unaffected: People lead normal lives

Normal life was largely not affected in Tamil Nadu owing to the nationwide strike by major trade unions protesting against the central government's anti-labour and economic policies.

The trade unions are also demanding implementation of their 12 demands.

Public transport buses plied on the roads but in less numbers. Educational institutions functioned as usual even school buses plied on the roads with students.

However, branch banking operations were affected as bank unions had declared their participation in the strike.

[Read: Live: Dawn to dusk strike by trade union cripples life in north India ]

Bank employees and officers all over the country including in the Reserve Bank of India observed the strike successfully in support of the 12 point charter of demands of the National Trade union Convention.

General Secretary, All India Bank Employees' Association (AIBEA) C.H.Venkatachalam, said in a statement that they opposed the anti-people economic policies and anti-worker labour reforms of the Government. .

In Tirupur, hosiery units were shut down.

Inter-state buses to Kerala were halted at the state borders putting the passengers into difficulty.

However, factories located in the industrial belt like Maraimalai Nagar, Sriperumbudur and others were functioning as usual.

Andhra Pradesh: Vizag Steel plant closed

Centre for Indian Trade Unions (CITU) General Secretary Tapan Kumar Sen said, "Vizag steel plant is 100 per cent closed. At some places there would be instances of 'Rail Roko'. This is going to be a successful strike as more than 15 crore workers will come on streets to protest."

Telangana banking operations come to a standstill

Banking operations came to standstill in Telangana as over 15,000 employees of various banks participated in the general strike called by trade unions to protest government's "anti-labour policies".

All India Bank Employees Association (AIBEAP) Joint Secretary B S Rambabu said demonstrations will be held in all the district headquarters along with other trade unions. "Though branches will be open, there is no business taking place in PSU banks. Clearing will also be impacted. However, there will not be any problem with regard to ATMs' functioning," Rambabu told PTI.

[Read: Bharat Bandh: In Bengaluru, BMTC, auto, cabs to go off roads]

Most of the buses run by Telangana State Road Transport Organisation are kept off the roads, a senior official said. As many as two lakh state government employees (gazetted, non-gazetted and class 4 employees) are supporting the strike, Telangana Gazetted officers Association General Secretary A Satyanarayana said.

"We will not directly participate in the strike, but wear black badges and attend duties," Satyanarayana said. According to him, Revenue department officials are not participating in the strike as they are busy in reorganisation of districts. Most of the industrial parks witnessed thin attendance today. Ten central trade unions have called for a one-day nationwide strike today, protesting the "anti-worker" changes in labour laws and the Centre's "indifference" to their demands for better wages.

[Read: General strike hits normal life in Bihar]

Meanwhile, speaking to reporters in Mumbai, Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya blamed the previous UPA regime for the issues faced by the workers and said the present government "doesn't want a confrontation with labour unions" and rather needs their cooperation and support.

He conceded banking and insurance sectors are likely to be impacted more due to the strike today, while adding that out of 12 demands of the trade unions, eight are related to the labour department and seven of them have been agreed to.

Puducherry: 1,200 workers arrested

Private buses, autos and other passenger vehicles were off the roads while state-run buses were operated as usual. Shops and establishments downed their shutters. Cinema houses suspended the shows for the day.

However, government departments registered normal attendance, official sources said. Police sources said around 1,200 workers of different trade unions were taken into custody when they blocked roads at several places.

Police pickets have been posted at all vulnerable points. A batch of employees of centrally-run premier health institute JIPMER observed a fast extending support to the strike, called by the central trade unions to press their charter of demands.

Karnataka: Transport off road

The day-long strike by central and state trade unions on Friday has affected normal life in many cities across Karnataka as shops, markets, banks and factories were shut, and buses, taxis and autos kept off the roads.

In the absence of bus services and to avoid inconvenience to students, schools and colleges in seven of the 30 districts across the state, including Bengaluru, Mysuru, Hubbli-Dharwad, Mangaluru, Udupi, Kalaburgi and Belagavi have declared holiday.

"The response to our strike call has been good from across the state, as thousands of workers, including women and officers have boycotted work and are demonstrating against the government in support of our demands," a trade union leader told IANS.

Essential services like ambulance, supply of drinking water and milk and private vehicles carrying commodities and vegetables have been exempted from the strike.

"Though all state-run, private, district and cooperative banks are closed, many of their ATMs (automatic teller machines) are functioning to enable people draw cash," AIBOC general secretary A.N. Krishna Murthy told IANS.

Suspension of state-run and private bus services on the intra-state and inter-state routes from many cities in the state has affected thousands of commuters, as drivers, conductors and their support staff joined the 12-hour dawn-to-dusk (6.m. to 6 p.m).

Hundreds of passengers alighting from trains at three railway stations and airports in Bengaluru were caught unawares and are stranded since morning in the absence of buses, taxis and autos.

"Thousands of factory workers and officers in industrial areas like Peenya, Anekal, Bidadi and Jigani in the city's northwest and southwest suburbs, took out rallies and demonstrated against the anti-labour laws and indifference of the government to their demands.

The strike has, however, not affected the working of IT services and biotech firms in Bengaluru, Mysuru, Mangaluru and Hubbali though their companies have hired in advance vehicles to ferry their employees.

In spite of the state government's offices remaining open, attendance was thin in the first hour in the absence of alternative transport for commuting from their houses.

Barring the Bharat Mazdoor Sangh, all central and state level trade unions are participating in the strike.

People residing in and around metro stations in the east-west corridor of Bengaluru are however, able to commute as the state-run organisation is operating its services.

A sight to remember: Unclogged roads get Bengalurians going

The 'bandh' call by the All India Trade Union against the "anti-worker" changes that the government has brought in its labour laws has reverberated across India. Schools, colleges and transport are hit, but emergency facilities continue to provide services in each state at the behest of the state and the central governments.

A sight to remember: Unclogged roads get Bengalurians going

The 'bandh' call by the All India Trade Union against the "anti-worker" changes that the government has brought in its labour laws has reverberated across India. Schools, colleges and transport are hit, but emergency facilities continue to provide services in each state at the behest of the state and the central governments.

A sight to remember: Unclogged roads get Bengalurians going

The 'bandh' call by the All India Trade Union against the "anti-worker" changes that the government has brought in its labour laws has reverberated across India. Schools, colleges and transport are hit, but emergency facilities continue to provide services in each state at the behest of the state and the central governments.

Autos in their heydey

Auto wallahs charge a bomb on Bandh day since no transport is available. Commuters face the brunt.

Empty roads home

Bengaluru roads spotted bike enthusiasts showcasing their skills on the wheels.

(Agencies)

Please Wait while comments are loading...