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RSS affiliate plans nationwide protest against new labour codes on October 28

Joe C Mathew     October 6, 2020

RSS affiliated trade union Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh (BMS) has called for nationwide protests against PM Narendra Modi-led government's recent amendments to the labour laws.

The three newly legislated labour codes subsume over two dozen different Central labour laws and introduce several social security measures, terms of employment etc. While BMS has been welcoming the labour codes in general, it is against some of the provisions, which it believes are 'anti-workers'. Withdrawal of right to strike, flexibilities in job contracts etc are some of the provisions opposed by the trade union.  

"The 19th National conference of BMS held virtually decided to hold continuous all India agitation against the anti-worker provisions in the new labour codes," Binay Kumar Sinha, natinoal general secretary, BMS said. A key resolution adopted by the conference was to demand the government to 'immediately withdraw the anti-worker provisions in the new Labour Codes'. The organisation also wanted a consultation meeting to be called with BMS and other trade unions to make the Labour Codes beneficial to both workers and industry.  

BMS will organise country wide "warning week" programs from October 10 to October 16. Post that, it has decided to hold nationwide protests on October 28. "If the government is not ready to hear the voice of workers, we will resort to continuous agitation including national level strikes to protect right to strike and other labour rights," Sinha said.

Welcoming the Supreme Court decision to scrap Gujarat government's labour reforms, BMS said the central and state governments should "stop the brutal way of amending labour laws, desist from indulging in 'ordinance raj' in labour sector and respect the views expressed by social organisations."

It called for a round table of stakeholders to formulate a National Employment Policy.  "The imported predatory economic and labour reforms and defective policies of the capitalist paradigm are responsible for landing our job generation in a sorry state of affairs," the organisation said.

The other resolutions adopted by BMS at its national conference include a demand for review of all pension schemes in favour of employees, effective changes in the law on migrant workers, national level registration, social security and other facilities and changes in the methodology of calculating the country's economic growth (GDP) by developing a "Bharatiya" model.

The national conference was inaugurated by RSS supremo Mohan Bhagawat.

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