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Monday, August 31, 2015

Appeal of Confederation to make the 2nd September, 2015 All India Strike a historic success

Dear Comrades,
                We have placed on our website the synopsis of the discussion the leaders of the Central Trade Unions had with the Group of Ministers on the 12 point charter of demands. The Central Trade Unions evaluated the Government’s response to the strike call and have come to the conclusion that in the absence of any tangible result, the strike action must take place.  The only issue on which there had been a concrete proposal from the Government was on the question of raising the bonus ceiling.  In fact such an assurance has been given by the earlier Government also.  Due to the pressure exerted by the employing class, the said assurance could not be translated into reality.  To have the assurance to be put into practice, the Bonus Act has to be amended and that is possible only in the next session of the parliament.  In other words, if one is to believe the assurance held out by the Government on the question of raising the ceiling for bonus computation, it can only have prospective effect i.e. for the next year 2016.  We firmly believe that the corporate would not allow the present government to give effect to this assurance.  The acrimonious ceiling on bonus while allowing unlimited extraction of profit for the companies is to be fought out through bitter struggles.
                There had been no word from the Government on the question of rolling back its proposals on the labour reforms. The proposed labour reforms will hurt the working class most.  The regularization of contract workers, payment of minimum wage, ensuring statutory Pension benefit, the registration or recognition of trade unions within a stipulated time limit to enable the workers to have the right to collective bargaining, the non implementation of the agreements reached at the various tripartite Labour conferences were some of the significant issues on which the working class sought settlement. Introduction of 100% FDI in Railways, 49% in Defencecorporatisation & privatisation of government entities, end for contract/casual temporary employment also met with stoic silence or rejection.  The Group of Ministers has successfully eluded the issues. The BMS unions have declared that they would withdraw from the strike action.  Their decision being political based is understandable, but is difficult to appreciate. We can only hope against hope that they would realize the reality of the situation in the days to come and become part of the joint struggles very soon.
 
                The 7th CPC has sought further time to submit its report.  They are now likely to submit their report by 31st December, 2015.  Given the way the commission had acted on this vital issue, we are not certain of it.  It is on the specious plea that they would be submitting their report within the stipulated time, they had rejected our demand for interim relief.  They ought to have submitted an interim report to the Government before seeking further time on the memorandum submitted by the Staff Side on merger of DA and Interim relief.  Even if the report is submitted say by 31st December, 2015,  which we feel is unlikely, the Government is bound to take another six months to take a view on the Commission’s recommendations.   It is incumbent upon the National JCA to meet immediately and take appropriate decision in the light of the unexpected step taken by the Commission in seeking further time to submit its report.  They must go ahead with the decision to go on strike from 23rd November, 2015 demanding the Commission to submit urgently an interim report on merger of DA and Interim relief.
                There had been no positive steps taken by the government to revive the functioning of the JCM at National or Departmental levels.  There appears to be no intention on their part to cause discussion on our charter of demands.   In this background we must revitalize and rejuvenate the functioning of our   Organizations at all levels.  We have received excellent reports of the strike preparation from all over the country.
DO EVERYTHING NEEDED TO MAKE THE 2ND SEPTEMBER, STRIKE A STUPENDOUS SUCCESS.

With greetings,
Yours fraternally,
M.Krishnan
Secretary General

Revision of method for calculation of Income and Cost of Branch Post Offices (BOs)

Date and Time of 27th meeting of the Standing Committee of Voluntary Agencies(SCOVA) under the Chairmanship of Honarable MOS(PP) to be held in new delhi

Copies of advertisements issued by Departments/Ministries, PSUs,Corporations etc. conducting Recruitment Drives for filling up vacancies of persons with disabilities.

Representation from Government servant on service matters - reiteration of instructions - regarding.

Dak Jagriti Editorial, September, 2015

 

AIPEU, Gr.-C, Phulbani Division conducted a G B Meeting on 30.08.2015 resolving participation in the nationwide one day strike on 02.09.2015

 
 

Anti-Corruption Branch probing govt. employees’ LTC scam


The Anti-Corruption Branch (ACB) is investigating an alleged scam related to the purported manipulation of official procedures, large scale forgery of documents and the inflation of financial figures pertaining to travel allowances granted to government employees on a routine basis.
Dubbed the Leave Travel Concession (LTC) scam by a whistle-blower, who happens to be a government employee himself, the alleged swindle is feared to have been in motion across the country for several decades and is understood to have been kept under wraps by government officials in collusion with dubious travel agents.

According to the complaint, the scam entails the purchase of cheap air tickets from government-run carrier Air India by travel agents well in advance of a trip, enticing government employees with packages including hotel accommodation and sightseeing at probable tourist destinations across India and making his or her parent department pay for both travel and accommodation expenses with the help of forged air tickets. Government employees are entitled only to the first, not the second.
 
“Government employees – both at the Centre and State levels – are entitled to LTC-80 and LTC allowances every two to three years; LTC-80 tickets, if procured directly from Air India, are relatively more expensive than fixed normal tickets because they are valid for a year,” the whistle-blower, whose identity is being withheld deliberately, stated in his complaint.
 
“That is where the agents come in. They entice government employees not to buy their tickets directly from the carrier, but settle for the tickets that they have already procured in advance, usually in electronic format, in lieu of which the agent provides freebies such as accommodation, and other add-ons which the employee should ideally pay instead of the tax payer or the exchequer,” the complainant further stated.
 
What follows, according to the complainant, is the manipulation of the price of the air ticket – which is refundable to the government employee under LTC by his or her parent department – to include both the travelling and accommodation expenditure incurred with the help of basic editing software over a computer.
The amount so arrived at, the complainant said, is more or less similar to the amount that would have been generated in the course of purchasing bona fide travel tickets under the LTC or LTC-80 schemes.
An ACB source said the department had written to several public sector undertakings and government units requesting them to get the travel bills claimed by their employees verified from Air India.
An Air India source confirmed the carrier had received several such requests from government departments seeking details about the veracity of the ticket fares claimed by their employees over the last three months.
Source : The Hindu

Sunday, August 30, 2015

Divisional level CBS Workshop conducted successfully by Bhubaneswar Division on 30.8.2015 at PRC BBSR GPO









 

Trade Unions Gear up for 'Historic' Strike on September 2

KOCHI: The nationwide strike called jointly by all the major trade unions on September 2 is likely to bring the State to a standstill, with employees of all public  and private sector establishments expressing solidarity with the strikers.
The union leaders who met here on Monday said the strike would be a ‘historic’ one, and that the International Labour Organisation and trade unions across the world had taken note of the preparations being made for it.  Speaking after the meeting, CITU leader Elamaram Kareem, on behalf of the joint front of the trade unions, requested all sections of society to join the strike, which is scheduled to begin at midnight on September 1 and end by 12:00 am the next day.
“Workers of public and private sector establishments, shops, construction firms, ports, refineries, banks and transporters will join the strike. In Kochi, construction of the Metro Rail will also be affected,” Elamaram Kareem said.
“The Kerala Working Journalists Union has also expressed solidarity with the strike, but the members will not skip work. Thec  State’s IT sector will also be affected,” said Kareem.
“Meanwhile, the Indian Railway employees, who fully supported the demands of the trade unions, will not be participating in the strike as they have called an indefinite strike in November,” said INTUC leader and joint trade union committee secretary R Chandrashekharan.
“Most of the demands and issues raised by the trade unions are broadly the same as those raised in the 48-hour national strike in February 2013, during the UPA regime. The only difference is that the current list of demands include a plea to the government to roll back the amendments to various labour laws,” said Chandrashekharan.
“The trade unions are deeply worried that the anti-worker policies remain the same, even after the government changed,” Chandrashekharan added.
Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh state president V Radhakrishnan said Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently met leaders of all the central trade unions - a first such gesture by any Prime Minister in 15 years. But, the discussion did not translate into concrete decisions on the demands raised by the unions.
Source:The New Indian Express

Saturday, August 29, 2015

Provision of customer Login ID and password for customers posting Express/Business Parcel in bulk - reg

Promotions and posting of Senior Time Scale (STS) officers of IPoS, Group 'A' to JAG of the Service and transfers/postings of JAG officers - order dated 28.08.2015

COUNTRYWIDE GENERAL STRIKE ON 2ND SEPTEMBER STANDS

CENTRAL TRADE UNIONS REASSERT THE CALL FOR UNITED ACTION
MARCH AHEAD UNITEDLY
MAKE THE COUNTRYWIDE GENERAL STRIKE ON 2ND SEPTEMBER A MASSIVE SUCCESS

After two rounds of discussion between the Group of Ministers and the central trade unions on the 12-point charter of demands of the trade unions held on 26th and 27th August 2015, the GoM headed by Finance Minister, Shri Arun Jaitley sent an appeal through the press release dated 27-08-2015 (Press Information Bureau) after 10 pm urging upon the trade unions to reconsider the call for countrywide general strike on 2nd September 2015 claiming that the Govt has given concrete assurance to consider most of the demands  of the trade unions and that the trade unions agreed to consider the Govt’s proposals. Similar appeal was also made in the meeting of 27th August.  Both the claims of the Govt are totally incorrect.   

To put the facts straight, the joint platform of central trade unions have been pursuing with successive governments at the centre with their basic demands since 2009 and observed three rounds of countrywide general strike since 2010, the last being for two days in February 2013. In the two rounds of meeting between the CTUOs and the Group of Minister, nothing transpired in concrete terms except vague statements by the ministers on steps to be taken or being taken on some of the issues, that too not in the right direction.

The Govt’s press release mentioned, inter alia, certain issues in support of their unfounded claim.
 
1.    The Govt stated about “appropriate legislation for making formula based minimum wages mandatory and applicable” for all. But despite concrete pointers made by the trade unions that such formula should be what has already been unanimously  recommended by the 44th Indian Labour Conference in 2012 and again reiterated by 46th Indian Labour Conference in July 2015 in which the Govt of India is also a party,  the Ministers did not give any concrete commitment on the same. In fact said formulae recommended by 44th ILC in 2012 and reiterated by 46th ILC in July 2015, makes minimum wage around Rs 20000/- at 2014 price level and the Trade Unions demanded only Rs 15,000/. The Ministers’ vague formulation does not ensure even half of that. Is such a position worth consideration?   
 
2.    On contract workers, the Govt assured that they will be guaranteed minimum wages. What is there to assure except spreading deliberate confusion?  Existing laws of the land lawfully ensures payment of minimum wages to contract workers. The Govt’s statement regarding “sector specific minimum wages for the contract workers” also does not make any sense. The trade unions demanded “same wages and other benefits as regular workers in the concerned industry/establishment to be paid to contract workers.” The 43rd Indian Labour Conference held in 2011 recommended the same and 46th ILC unanimously reiterated the same in 2015, in which, again, the present Govt is a party. How could they deny the unanimous recommendation of the highest tripartite forum in the country like Indian Labour Conference?
 
3.    The steps taken by the Govt on Labour Law amendments, are meticulously designed to throw out more than 70% of the workers on industries and other establishments from the purview and coverage of almost all basic labour laws and also to eliminate almost all components/provisions of rights and protections of the workers. This was supplemented by more aggressive steps already taken by a good number of state governments to already amend the labour laws in the similar lines. On this issue, the Govt stated only that they will hold tripartite consultation before taking such steps.  The trade unions demanded scrapping of such proposals by the central govt and also not to give assents (through President) to the unilateral amendments made by the state governments. Even in all the tripartite consultations held on some of the proposals of the Govt, the trade unions’ unanimous suggestions has been ignored by the Govt in favour of loud supportive applauds of the employers. Once these retrograde changes in labour laws totally dismantling the rights and protection measures for the workers and also throwing more that 70% of the workers out of the purview of labour laws are enacted, thereby rendering the almost entire working people a right-less entity in their workplace, what would ensure even payment of minimum wage and other social security benefits for them, even if those provisions are improved ?  Can any trade union, worth its name accept such a machination designed to impose conditions of virtual slavery on the working people ?
 
4.    Despite repeated insistence by all the trade unions, the Govt refused to concede to the demand for recognizing  the Scheme workers, viz., Anganwadi, Mid-day meal, ASHA, Para-teachers and others as “worker” with attendant rights of statutory minimum wages and other benefits in gross violation of the unanimous recommendation of the 45th Indian Labour Conference in 2013, reiterated again by the 46th ILC  in 2015. These workers and all the schemes have been put to further crisis threatening their existance owing to drastic cut in budgetary allocations for those schemes. In such a situation, does the assurance of the Govt to “extend social security measures” and “working out ways” for the same carry any meaning?
 
5.    On bonus issue, the Govt has assured to revise the eligibility and calculation ceiling to Rs 21000/- and Rs 7000/- respectively from existing Rs 10000/- and Rs 3500/-. Trade Unions’ demand has been that since there is no ceiling on profit, all ceilings in the Payment of Bonus Act should be removed altogether. Trade unions also demanded substantial upward revision of the formula for gratuity calculation and remove the ceiling on gratuity payment. The Govt has negated the demands.
 
6.    On price rise situation, claim of the Govt that it has gone down does not match with ground reality in respect of commodities for daily necessities of the common people. The demands of the trade unions for putting a ban on speculation/forward trading in essential commodities and services along with universalisation of public distribution system throughout the country have been totally ignored.
 
7.    Trade Unions demanded stoppage of disinvestment in public sector undertakings playing crucial and supportive role in advancement of the national economy. Govt totally ignored the same, rather has been going on aggressively in disinvestment route  in all the major PSUs much to the detriment of the interest of the country’s economy.  On the demands for stoppage of further FDI in defence, railways and financial sector, the stance of the Govt is continuing to be a total denial. Rather, the Govt has been aggressively pursuing deregulation and privatization in strategic sectors like electricity, Port & Docks, Airports etc in a big way.
 
There are other issues as well, statement of Govt continued to be totally vague and their claim is unfounded. How can anybody, rather any trade union worth its name can consider above stands taken by the Govt on vital demands of the workers as a positive development and move out from the programme of united strike action ?
Therefore, there is absolutely no reason for reconsidering the decisions of the Central Trade Unions for countrywide general strike on 2nd September 2015. Rather, the situation demands that there should be no vascillation in carrying forward the call for general strike on 2nd September 2015 throughout the country in all sectors of the economy with firm determination.
The Central Trade Unions appeal to all working people irrespective of affiliations to make the call for countrywide general strike against the anti-worker, anti-people policies of Govt a massive success. 
                                                                                                  Tapan  Sen                             
                                                                                                 General Secretary CITU

Trade unions barring RSS-affiliated Bhartiya Mazdoor Sangh to strike on September 2

NEW DELHI: All central trade unions barring the RSS-affiliated Bhartiya Mazdoor  Sangh on Friday decided to go ahead with their planned nationwide strike on  September 2, saying the government failed to give a concrete proposal on their  12-point charter of demands.

 "There is no reason for us to defer the  planned strike and all 11 central unions will be on a one day nationwide strike  to convey the discontent amongst workers," G Sanjeevareddy, chairman of the  central trade unions coordination committee said after a three-hour meeting where the government  offered some sops. However, BMS, which claims to be the second largest trade  union in the country, feels that following the government's proposal, unions  should give it time to deliver. "We have requested all central trade unions not  to go on strike just for political reasons," Vrijesh Upadhyay, general secretary of BMS, said after the meeting. BMS feels  that unions should give government six months to deliver on the proposals. "For the first time, the government has made a positive move  on some of the issues. Let us give them some time to deliver," Upadhyay said.  

An inter-ministerial committee led by finance minister Arun  Jaitley had on Thursday proposed to significantly increase minimum wages and  make them mandatory across the country. It also suggested an increase in the  bonus ceiling as well as widening the coverage of provident fund and health  insurance to include  construction workers and those in schemes such as aanganwadis.

The  unions' decision to go ahead with the strike is a blow for the government that  met trade union representatives thrice in July and twice in August to discuss their 12-point  charter of demands. The government had assured them action on at least four of  their key demands on Thursday while urging unions to reconsider their decision  to go on strike. However, unions felt that whatever assurance has come is not  meeting their demand and hence 10 of the 11 central trade unions will stage a  one-day general strike next week. 

2nd Sept. 2015 one day nationwide stike - A revolution against the Central Govt.'s anti-working class, Pro-corporate economic and labour policies