Home / Breaking News / WB govt calls for tripartite meet to resolve jute industry impasse | India News

WB govt calls for tripartite meet to resolve jute industry impasse | India News


KOLKATA: The West Bengal government has called
for a
tripartite meeting
to
resolve the
impasse between the
jute mill owners and the workers’ trade unions, which have threatened
to go on an indefinite strike from March 1 over their unfulfilled demands.

A notice issued by the state labour department earlier this week invited the
jute unions on February 18
to discuss their charter of demands with the mill owners.

Earlier the meeting was scheduled
to be held Thursday.

All trade unions in the
jute sector, barring Indian National Trinamool Trade Union Congress, have agreed
to join the strike from March 1
to press
for their demands, including wage revision and implementation of Minimum Wages Act.

The
jute sector employs over two lakh workers in more than 60 mills in the state.

The strike, if not prevented, may have an impact on the vote bank of political parties across the
jutebelts of Howrah, North 24 Parganas and Hooghly districts.

The general election is due this summer.

The
jute
industry has not seen any major wage revision after 2011. The state government, in the last
tripartite meeting held on January 17, had decided
to give an interim relief of Rs 70, raising the workers’ wage
to Rs 327 per day till the new wage agreement was finalised.

The unions, however, contended that the interim benefit was a unilateral decision of the state government.

A former chairman of Indian
Jute Mills Association, a body of mill owners, said paying anything more than Rs 327 would not be possible as “margins are already under pressure in the
jute business”.

“The government should take steps
to ensure that there are no disruptions. Strikes will only help the central government
to dilute mandatory packaging order in favour of the plastic
industry,” he said



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