RSS-affiliate Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) has given a call for a nationwide agitation on February 20 to protest against “anti-labour policies” and is rethinking to attend Indian Labour Conference (ILC) later this month. The Kendriya Karya Samithi (national executive committee or KKS) meeting of BMS held at Ambaji in Gujarat on February 8 has called for “nationwide agitation against the central government’s anti-labour policies”, BMS General Secretary Virjesh Upadhyay said in a statement today. He said that the KKS has directed all its unions to observe February 20 as ‘Black Day’ and hold union-level protest demonstrations, wear black badges and hold gate meetings. The KKS strongly condemns the central government for not keeping any of its promises made to the BMS delegation on November 17, 2017, after the historical Delhi rally.
The protest is against negligent attitude of the central government towards labour problems, the BMS said. Indian workers belonging to different central trade unions have put forth burning issues of labour before the government but the Union Budget 2018 was totally silent about any of the issues raised by unions, it added. After a gap of three years, the 46th Indian Labour Conference is scheduled to be held on February 26-27, 2018, at New Delhi which will be inaugurated by Prime Minister Narendra Modi. The KKS has directed all its districts, states & industrial federations to hold dharnas, huge demonstrations at district headquarters, state capitals and industrial estates on February 26-27, 2018.
In this connection, a huge demonstration before the ILC venue will also be organised at New Delhi on February 26 to mount pressure of the government to resolve labour issues. The BMS has been pressing for increasing honorarium to aanganwadi workers and bringing them under social security coverage; reimbursement of Cess amount to concerned labour welfare boards affected due to GST; enhancing EPS pension from Rs1000/per month to Rs5000 and providing special funds to Sick PSUs which can be revived.
It has also sought a hike in income tax exemptions to salaried sections up to Rs 5 lakh; withdrawing anti-labour provisions bringing under the garb of Labour Law Reforms; hiking Unorganised Social Security fund up to Rs 2000 crore and implementation of Supreme Court verdict on Equal pay to Equal work. The BMS demands the central government to review the budget immediately and take steps to redress the grievances. If, the Union Government does not take any step before February 25, 2018, the BMS will rethink its participation in the forthcoming Indian Labour Conference, it added.