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Monday, November 13, 2017

India: National Trade Union Mobilisation Underway

The three ITUC member organisations in India, INTUC, HMS and SEWA are taking part in a nationwide mobilisation to protest at the government’s anti-worker policies and refusal to engage in serious dialogue with the trade union movement. The mobilisation started today with a three-day manifestation outside the national Parliament in Delhi, and involves all the main trade union centres of the country, with the exception of the BMS which is linked to the ruling party of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Sharan Burrow, ITUC General Secretary, said “the international trade union movement stands in full solidarity with our Indian colleagues, who are calling for employment policies and laws which support India’s working people instead of simply enriching the elite in India and foreign companies. The ITUC calls on the Indian government to commit to genuine dialogue, and to adopt policies which support working people and would lift millions out of poverty.”

Government attempts to exclude the INTUC from talks were seen by the other trade union federations as a sign of bad faith, and they refused to participate in talks where the government determined who would speak for workers instead of accepting that workers themselves should decide who speaks on their behalf. Discussions which had taken place showed that the Modi government was not prepared to listen to the trade union movement’s real concerns, leaving them no option but to launch a massive national mobilisation.
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