- The strike has been called against some policies of the Central govt
- The BJP govt has intensified the attacks on the working people, a statement from the meeting said
- The meeting welcomed the reiteration by SKM to observe Rural Bandh on 28-29 March
In protest against the government policies affecting workers, farmers, and people, a joint forum of central trade unions has given a call for a nationwide strike on March 28 and 29. The Joint Platform of central trade unions held a meeting in Delhi on March 22, 2022, to take stock of the preparations in various states and sectors for the proposed two-day all India strike on 28-29 March 2022 against "the anti-worker, anti-farmer, anti-people and anti-national policies" of the central government, a statement said.
The meeting took note of the fact that emboldened by the results of the recently-held state elections, the BJP government at the center has intensified the attacks on the working people, reducing the interest rate on EPF accumulations to 8.1 per cent from 8.5 per cent, sudden hike in petrol, LPG, kerosene, CNG etc., taking steps to implement their program of monetization (PSU land bundles) but are held back only because of the worsening condition of inflation and crashing share markets.
The meeting condemned these policies, it stated.
The meeting welcomed the reiteration by the Samyukta Kisan Morcha that they will observe Rural Bandh on 28-29 March.
The meeting appealed to various unions at State levels to join the strike to oppose the anti-labour policies of the Central Government, the four labour codes being it's a glaring example.
The central trade unions which are part of this joint forum are INTUC, AITUC, HMS, CITU, AIUTUC, TUCC, SEWA, AICCTU, LPF and UTUC.
Bharat Bandh on March 28, 29 - Banking services to be affected
The banking sector will be joining the strike, the All India Bank Employees Association said on Facebook.
The State Bank of India has said banking services may get impacted to an extent. SBI said it has been advised by the Indian Banks' Association (IBA) that All India Bank Employees' Association (AIBEA), Bank Employees Federation of India (BEFI) and All India Bank Officers' Association (AIBOA) have served notice about their decision to go on a nationwide strike.
The bank said it cannot quantify the potential loss due to the strike.
"We advise that while the bank has made necessary arrangements to ensure normal functioning in its branches and offices on the days of strike, it is likely that work in our bank may be impacted to a limited extent, by the strike," SBI said in a regulatory filing.
Bharat Bandh on March 28, March 29 - Which sectors would join strike?
The statement said that roadways, transport workers and electricity workers have decided to join the strike in spite of the impending threat of ESMA (Haryana and Chandigarh, respectively).
Financial sectors, including banking and insurance, are joining the strike, it stated.
The strike notices have been given by unions in the sectors such as coal, steel, oil, telecom, postal, income tax, copper, banks, insurance among others, it also stated.
The unions in railways and defence sector would be making mass mobilization in support of the strike at several hundreds of spots, it stated.
Bengal makes it mandatory for employees to attend office during strike
Meanwhile, the West Bengal government has asked all its employees to report for duty during the 48-hour nationwide strike on March 28 and 29, failing which they will be issued show-cause notices.
The TMC dispensation, which has been opposed to bandhs as its official policy, said that no casual leave will be granted to employees except in emergency situations such as illness or death in the family.
In a notification issued from state secretariat Nabanna, Principal Secretary Manoj Pant said that any employee remaining absent for two days or either of the days without permission shall be asked for an explanation.
"In view of call given by different trade unions and others for a 48-hour nationwide strike on 28th and 29th March 2022, it has been decided that all state government offices shall remain open and all the employees shall report for duty on those days. It has been decided that no casual leave or any other leave for absence either in the first half or in the second half or for the whole day shall be granted to any employee on the above-mentioned dates," the notification said.
It said that the absence of employees on the two days shall be treated as 'dies-non' and no salary will be admissible unless covered by grounds of hospitalisation, bereavement in family, severe illness, or staffers on maternity, child care, medical or earned leave before March 25.