LIC employees support trade unions observing ‘demands day’

Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU, May 22: The LIC employees under the banner of Northern Zone Insurance Employees’ Association (NZIEA) Srinagar Division today extended support to the Central Trade Unions observing ‘demands day’ and flayed BJP Government for damaging interests of the working class.
The meeting in this connection at Jammu was presided over by Dinesh Kumar Sharma, vice president of the Association. Speaking on the occasion, Pawan Gupta, Divisional Secretary said that NZIEA extends solidarity with the demands of Central Trade Unions which are observing demands day today. He further said the COVID-19 pandemic has given rise to a serious crisis in India. The poor migrant labourers and workers of the unorganised sector became the worst sufferers due to the sudden and unplanned lockdown. The sudden closure of factories and establishments with  hardly four hours’ notice rendered lakhs of workers jobless.
He said as per Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE), 122 million workers have lost their jobs. The loss of jobs and livelihoods has become a serious problem, many workers are dying due to hunger. The BJP led Govt has, however, stubbornly refused to recognise the problems of the workers. Instead of providing some solace to the workers, the  Govt has launched a savage attack on the hard-earned rights of the workers.
Gupta alleged that the Govt has utilised the Corona crisis as an opportunity to attack workers. It all started with an attack on the DA of the employees. Now, the BJP Govt in UP promulgated two ordinances nullifying 35 of the 38 Labour Laws in the State for a period of three years and extending the working day from 8 to 12 hours. The Factories Act 1948, the Minimum Wages Act 1948, the Trade Unions Act 1926 and all major Labour Laws were annulled in one fell swoop. The BJP ruled Madhya Pradesh Govt has also decided that all new industries will be exempt from the Labour Laws for a period of 1000 days. The Gujarat Govt has decided that Labour Laws will be made ineffective for 1200 days.
The Govts of Himachal, Haryana, Oddisha, Maharashtra, Rajasthan, Bihar and Punjab have enhanced the daily working hours from 8 to 12. The implication of the Labour Laws is that the workers cannot demand drinking water, first- aid boxes and protective equipment, cleanliness, ventilation, lighting, canteens, restrooms, sanitisation at the workplaces, provision of masks and safety equipment etc. Due to Corona the Indian economy was already in dire straits, but now the  crisis has intensified manifold for the poor, marginalised, vulnerable and unorganised workers, Gupta added.