THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The 24-hour nationwide strike called by the coordination committee of 10 trade unions affected normal life in the district with public transport, including KSRTC, taxi and autorickshaws, keeping off roads.
However, two-wheelers and a few private cars took to the roads though autorickshaws that conducted services early morning were blocked by strike supporters. Almost all shops and commercial establishments remained shut and offices, including Secretariat, functioned with very low staff turnout. Meanwhile, in Technopark, over 70 percent of employees turned up for work, sources said. However, passengers who arrived at the Central Railway Station had a tough time. They were taken by Police personnel from SAP Camp in 10 police vans to their respective destinations. According to the Police, around 1,500 passengers who wanted to go to the Medical College were stranded at the Railway Station.
According to Shefeen Ahamed, Rural SP and City Police Commissioner in-charge, the day went smooth and no untoward incidents were reported from any part of the city or suburbs. “We had deployed a huge battalion of police personnel at all major junctions. We arranged special security for vehicles carrying employees to VSSC and Technopark on a convoy basis. A special police protection was arranged seperately for Technopark employees”, Ahamed added.
Rally Taken Out
Rallies taken out by major trade unions from the city and suburbs converged in front of the Secretariat at 11 am. CITU state president Anathalavattom Anandan, who inaugurated the protest, lashed out at the anti-people policies of the Narendra Modi-led NDA government at the Centre.
“The youths in the country are going behind Modi. He deceives them giving flowery promises. All the multi-national corporates need is profit, they are least bothered about the welfare of their employees. So, it is time to protest. The people should react to such indifferent attitude. As far as IT sector is concerned, a major chunk of IT engineers have lost their jobs owing to lay-off. Even IT major TCS had also sacked over 1000 employees over the last couple of years”, he said.
The 24-hour strike was called by the trade unions, including INTUC, CITU and AITUC raising various demands. The demands included the withdrawal of the amendment of Land Acquisition Bill, ensuring `15,000 to the employees in a monthly basis, withdrawal of labour law, protect the rights of labourers and deterring the price rise.