The Confederation of Free Trade Unions of India (CFTUI), a trade union partner of WSM, efforts to provide the Tripura’s home guards with more rights have paid off and wins the social elections at VIZAG Steel jointly with INTUC.
CFTUI is now organizing the Tripura Home guard association under the leadership of CFTUI’s working president, Ajay Biswas, who has served three times in the past as a Member of the Parliament. So far, there were no provisions of Dearness Allowance (DA), a cost of living adjustment allowance paid to Government and Public sector employees as well as pensioners in India, nor expectations for salaries increase for the Tripura’s home guards as they only perceived fixed allowances. But thanks to a continuous struggle made of sit-ins, demonstrations and even hunger strikes, CFTUI was able to provide DA and wage increases to the Home guards. Moreover, they were included in the pay commission, which is a rare achievement.
Meanwhile, the 2nd demand, to provide pension to retired Home guards, was finally accepted by the government of Tripura as well, who will provide Rs750/per month (10,5€) pension for each retired home guard. Hence, Tripura is the only state that is providing pension to retired home guards and this is thanks to the unwavering determination of the workers and CFTUI.
|Copyright: Scoopnest: visit of Congress VP Rahul Gandhi who interacted with the employees there|
CFTUI’s victory did not come alone: forming a coalition with the Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC) affiliated union, the CFTUI affiliated union, United steel employees union, has won the Visakhapatnam Steel Plant (popularly known as VIZAG STEEL) secret ballet election. The Visakhapatnam Steel Plant is employing more than 12.000 workers, the first Shore based Integrated steel plant of the country and the largest single site plant in India and south and east Asia combined. In addition to this formal work force, there are more than 20,000 as informal workforce, which CFTUI is organising under the name of Steel City Contract Labour Union.