At least 10 trade unions have given a Bharat Bandh call for Thursday, November 26. The trade unions taking part in the nationwide general strike include Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC), All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS), Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), All India United Trade Union Centre (AIUTUC), Trade Union Co-ordination Centre (TUCC), Self-Employed Women’s Association (SEWA), All India Central Council of Trade Unions (AICCTU), Labour Progressive Federation (LPF) and United Trade Union Congress (UTUC). The BJP aligned Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) won't take part in the bandh.
Why are trade unions protesting, and what are their demands
- The unions are protesting the government's "anti-labour policies". The unions are demanding a cash transfer of Rs 7,500 per month for all non-income tax paying families and 10 kg free ration per person per month to all needy.
- The unions have also demanded for expansion of rural employment guarantee scheme MGNREGA to provide 200 days' work in a year in rural areas at enhanced wages and also extension of the employment guarantee to urban areas.
- The trade unions have asked the government to withdraw all "anti-farmer laws and anti-worker" labour codes and stop privatisation of public sector including the financial sector and stop corporatisation of government-run manufacturing and service entities like railways, ordinance factories, ports etc.
- They have also urged to withdraw the "draconian circular on forced premature retirement of government and PSU employees".
- They have also put forth their demands including 'pension to all', scrapping NPS (National Pension System) and restoration of earlier pension with improvement in EPS-95 (Employees' Pension Scheme-1995 run by retirement fund body EPFO).