Published On: Thu, Aug 27th, 2015

Strike talks with Govt inconclusive; Unions to meet tomorrow

New Delhi:Top central trade unions will meet here tomorrow to chart out their strategy on the proposed nationwide strike call on September 2 against labour reforms, after their talks with the government remained inconclusive for the second day today.

AITUC Secretary D L Sachdev

AITUC Secretary D L Sachdev

While differences continued on various issues, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley-led ministerial group, which is discussing the matter with the union leaders, agreed to the formula proposed by unions for calculating the minimum wages.

The ministerial group had met the union leaders yesterday as well to appeal them to reconsider their decision.

After today’s meeting, All India Trade Union Congress Secretary D L Sachdev said all 11 central trade unions who have given the strike call will meet tomorrow.

“We are sitting together tomorrow. Today’s meeting was inconclusive and the chances of trade unions calling off the strike are remote. We told the government that we are not fully convinced of their efforts,” Sachdev said.

Tomorrow’s meeting has been called to review the preparation for the strike, as also to take into consideration the talks with the government over these two days, he added.

“The chances of calling off the strike are bleak as there is nothing convincing that the government has said,” he said.

The ministers who participated in the talks included Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya, Oil Minister Dharmendra Pradhan, Power Minister Piyush Goyal and Minister of State in the Prime Minister’s Office Jitendra Singh.

Speaking to reporters after the meeting, Pradhan said they held discussions and the government expressed its views on some basic issues.

“There is need for a fundamental change on minimum wages… Till now, the minimum wage clause is only advisory in nature and the government has decided to make it mandatory.

“The unions wanted it should be based on a formula and the government has agreed to that. So, we have taken a very important decision on minimum wages. After a detailed discussion, the Labour Ministry will take it to the Cabinet,” Pradhan said.

The trade unions have put forth a 12-point charter of demands before the Labour Ministry, including that on labour reforms, inflation, minimum wages, social security, employment and disinvestment in PSUs.

Among other issues, Pradhan listed matters like social security, bonus payment, pension, tripartite arrangement, strict adherence to labour laws and transparency in employment.


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