Labour reforms: Shutdown cripples normal life across the countryNew Delhi: Normal life came to a standstill today across the country due to nationwide strike called by trade unions to protest alleged anti-labour policies of Modi government.All India Bank Employees' Association (AIEBA) general secretary
New Delhi: Normal life came to a standstill today across the country due to nationwide strike called by trade unions to protest alleged anti-labour policies of Modi government.
All India Bank Employees' Association (AIEBA) general secretary CH Venkatachalam said that strike in the banking and insurance sector has begun on a very encouraging note signifying total success.
"The strike has started on an encouraging note across the country as per initial information we got. Employees of Reserve Bank of India (RBI), nationalised banks, old private sector banks, cooperative banks, regional rural banks are participating in the strike," Venkatachalam said.
According to him, strike is a success in major cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai and Kolkata.
Across the country around 500,000 bankers - workers and officers - would be participating in the strike. Around 75,000 branches will not work.
In national capital, around 90,000 autos and 15,000 taxis are supporting strike.
The Metro trains are crowded as commuters face problems in reaching their destinations.
Even the Grameen Sewa vehicles joined the strike.
However, radio taxis and the app-based ones are plying as usual.
In West Bengal, normal life was partially affected. Train services of South Eastern railway were normal although Eastern railway officials said suburban services in the Sealdah south section were hit for sometime in the morning due to blockade at some places.
Metro Rail services were operating normally, officials said.
Shops, markets and business establishments in most areas remained closed.
State administration was plying a large fleet of public buses while private buses and taxis were also seen on the streets though their number was less compared to other week days.
Airport officials here said that flights of Air India and other airlines operated normally at NSC Bose International Airport.
The 24-hour strike called by various trade unions hit Kerala hard as public buses went off roads and shops and banks remained shut.
All the operations at the Cochin Port were also hit.
In Kerala, 17 trade unions are taking part in the nation-wide strike to protest the anti-labour, anti-people policies of the central government.
Most of the IT firms in Technopark and Infopark reported very thin attendance.
The Kerala government, however, said those government employees who will not report to work would lose the day's salary.
All examinations that were to be held on Wednesday have been postponed by the various state universities.
However, the strike exempted people going for the Haj pilgrimage from the Kochi airport.
The shutdown called by the trade unions against the central government's economic measures hit the commuters most as over 2,000 state roadways buses went off road.
However, the state government offices and educational institutions were functioning normally and there was no report of violence anywhere in the state.
The impact of the shutdown was more in major towns like Shimla, Rampur, Theog, Solan, Mandi, Nahan, Una, Bilaspur, Hamirpur, Dharamsala, Palampur, Kangra, Kullu and Manali as private bus operators also joined the protest.
An official of the Himachal Road Transport Corporation said more than 250 inter-state routes were badly hit due to the strike.
The day-long nationwide strike affected normal life in Bengaluru and other parts of Karnataka even as the state government warned against forceful imposition of the strike.
Government transport workers joined the strike objecting to the proposed motor bill as buses and autorickshaws kept off the roads causing inconvenience to office-goers and those travelling to far-off places.
People who have travelled to the city from other places were seen stranded at the railway station and bus station. Anticipating inconvenience to students, schools and colleges had declared a holiday today.
The strike affecting normal life has been reported from several parts of the state including Dharwad, Raichur, Davangere, Bellary and Hassan.
Normal life was hit in Bihar on Wednesday with thousands of workers in the government and private sector joining the nationwide strike protesting the central government's policies.
Workers of trade unions belonging to the Congress and the Left parties blocked roads and at some places stopped passenger and long-distance trains.
"Road traffic in Patna and across Bihar was badly hit by the strike of the trade unions. Auto-rickshaws and buses are off the roads in Patna and other districts," a police official said.
According to police, the shutdown supporters blocked national and state highways at various places across the state.
"Road services are badly hit. Long route buses and trucks are not plying on roads," a police official said.
Banking operations were also affected as most of the banks remained closed.
Normal life in Left Front-ruled Tripura was today paralysed following a nationwide day-long strike called by ten central trade unions.
Vehicles did not ply on the roads, while markets were closed. Banks and other financial institutions, schools and colleges were closed and attendance was thin in government offices as well, officials said.
The entrance gates of ONGC facility and the Tripura Jute Mill were closed.
Strike supporters were seen picketing on the roads and CITU members organised small rallies on railway stations while train services were also severely affected.
Police said they were keeping a vigil on the situation and security forces were patrolling in different parts of the state. No untoward incident was reported from any part of the state.
Telangana, Andhra Pradesh
The nation-wide strike hit transport and banking services in both Telangana and Andhra Pradesh.
Buses of state-owned road transport corporations in both the states went off the roads as employees joined the strike.
Auto-rickshaws in Hyderabad and other towns in the two states were also off the roads. Truck owners and drivers also joined the strike at few places. Petrol bunks were shut at few places due to the strike.
Banking services were also paralysed in the two states. Public sector banks were closed in Hyderabad and other parts of Telangana and all cities and towns in Andhra as employees joined the strike.
Coal production in state-owned Singareni Collieries Company Limited (SCCL) in Telangana was also affected. Employees of Visakhapatnam Steel Plant, HPCL, Ship Yard and other public sector undertakings also joined the strike.