New Delhi: The indefinite strike announced by Indian port and dock workers from Monday, March 16, in protest against the corporatisation of 11 government-owned major ports has been called off.
A decision to this effect was taken after the Shipping Ministry gave a written assurance that the apprehensions of the unions would be addressed and discussed, that no major port would be privatised and that there would be no retrenchment of port staff.
According to P M Mohammed Haneef, general secretary of the All India Port and Dock Workers Federation, there was some confusion in the case of pensioners, and the Ministry had also clarified that the benefits of pensioners would be protected.
While four of the five major federations of port and dock workers — — All India Port & Dock Workers Federation (HMS), All India Port & Dock Workers Federation (HMS-W), Indian National Port & Dock Workers Federation (INTUC), and Port, Dock & Water Front Workers’ Federation (AITUC) – supported the proposal to withdraw the strike, the fifth federation decided to observe a token one-day strike on March 16.
Over 14,000 workers belonging to Water Transport Workers’ Federation of India will observe a day-long nationwide protest today at all major ports.