CUDDALORE: With talks between the NLC management and recognised unions remaining deadlocked, the joint council of ten other unions stepped up pressure on the management by staging a hunger strike in Neyveli on Friday demanding 30 per cent wage hike and two increments.
Hundreds of regular NLC employees took part in the strike, which was presided by CITU president Velmurugan. LLF president Thirunavukkarasu inaugurated the protest, in which Murugan, general secretary of BMS and Jothi Ramalingam, State treasurer of Pattali Thozil Sangam (PTS) and Chinnadurai, district secretary of TVS participated.
Speaking on the occasion, Velmurugan said, “The recognised unions are demanding 24 per cent hike, but the joint council of ten unions wants 30 per cent hike. In addition, the council urges the management not to withdraw any benefits of the employees including the Compensatory offs. Also, yearly 2,000 contract workers should be regularised.”
Thilagar of PTS said “We met the Union Power Minister in New Delhi on Thursday with our leader Anbumani Ramadoss. We explained our demands to the minister. He promised that he would take necessary steps.”
He further said “The new hike-percentage should not be less than the hike-percentage in the previous settlement. So we are demanding 30 per cent wage hike along with two increments. Though the strike is continuing, the management is not willing to end it by finalising an amicable settlement.”
Jayaraman, general secretary of CITU, ended the strike with an announcement that all the ten unions of the council will hold a human-chain protest on Monday.