Mumbai: The All India Port & Dock Workers’ Federation (AIPDWF) said on 28 August it will launch a nationwide strike beginning 1 September, following failure of talks with the chairmen of major ports in the country.
Talks between chairmen of major ports and representatives of five recognised federations of port and dock workers, held in New Delhi on 27 August , “have failed to find any amicable solution,” AIPDWF said in a release here.
The workers have been demanding restoration of retirement age at 60 years, merger of 50% of dearness allowance (DA) with basic pay and payment of interim relief at Rs1,000 a month for serving employees, among other things.
AIPDWF president S R Kulkarni said the federations were unable to accept Indian Ports Association and Mumbai Port Trust Chairperson Rani Jadhav’s appeal of not resorting to strike but wait for the government’s decision.
The representatives of the federation have also expressed “their grave concern at the indifferent attitude of the Ministries of Shipping and Labour,” said Kulkarni.
This was “particularly when the Cabinet had taken a policy decision to enhance the age of retirement of PSU employees to 60 years,” he added.
According to him, the Shipping Ministry was adopting a “discriminatory attitude” towards the claims of the port and dock workers. Besides, it had not responded to a joint letter addressed to it all the federations seeking intervention to resolve pending issues.
The leaders of the five federations are, however, ready to meet the officials of Shipping Minister, “If invited for negotiations to settle their long-pending demands” before 1 September, the release said.