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Bharat Bandh: What's WORKING and What's NOT

Last updated on: February 20, 2013 08:12 IST

Bharat Bandh: What's WORKING and What's NOT

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The two-day nationwide strike called by 11 trade unions kick-started on Wednesday.

The unions have put forward a charter of 10 demands such as urgent steps to control price rise, strict enforcement of labour laws in all places of work, social security net for workers in the unorganised sector, end to disinvestment in PSUs and raising minimum wage to Rs 10,000 a month.

The strike has been called jointly by the Bhartiya Majdoor Sangh (BMS), All India Trade union Congress (INTUC), All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS), Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), All India United Trade Union Centre (AIUTUC) and other affiliated organisations.

Let's take a look at how the bandh has disrupted normal life.

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Photographs: Munish Sharma/Reuters

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Banking Services

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Banking Services: As many as nine banking unions are participating in the strike. Ten lakh bank employees and officers working in 90,000 bank branches of all public, private, foreign, co-operative and regional rural banks across India will observe a 48-hour strike.

So postpone any bank-related work for Friday. Cheques and other transactions may not be cleared instantly.

The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India estimates that the economy will "take a big hit of Rs 15000-20000 crore from the nation-wide disruption in economic activity".

According to Assocham states like West Bengal, Kerala, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Tamil Nadu, Haryana, Karnataka and parts of Uttar Pradesh are likely to be affected significantly.

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Photographs: Ajay Verma/Reuters

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Transport Services

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Transport Services: In Mumbai, auto and taxi unions have announced that they will not be part of the bandh. Brihanmumbai Electricity Supply and Transport, the city's public transport service and electricity provider, has said that all its buses will hit the road. The city's lifeline, its local trains too will be operating as schedule. However, do not be surprised if your train is running behind schedule.

In Delhi, commuters, particularly school children and office goers, may face inconvenience today and the day after as a number of taxi and autorickshaws unions have decided to support the nationwide strike.

Some bus unions have also extended support to the strike. The Delhi government has cancelled leaves of all DTC employees and asked senior officials of the Corporation to be at bus depots from early morning to ensure a smooth running of the bus service. Delhi Transport Minister Ramakant Goswami said around 1,000 RTV (rural transport vehicles) and tourist buses will ply on DTC routes for next two days.

The bandh may see some impact in some other states like West Bengal and Kerala where the Left Front parties are likely to enforce the strike.

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Photographs: Vivek Prakash/Reuters

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Other Services

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Other Services: Expecting a gas cylinder deliverboy at your doorsteps on Wednesday? Don't bother. He won't turn up. Also on the NOT WORKING TODAY mode for the next couple of days are insurance offices, telephone services and post.

Essential services like water supply, electricity will continue as routine.

Only garbage collection and cleaning of roads would be affected, as workers have joined issue with the unions.

In Maharashtra, the government has warned all Class IV employees to withdraw their strike. They have said that they would issue disciplinary action against any officer or employee found participating in the strike and causing disruptions.

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Photographs: Danish Siddiqui/Reuters
Tags: , Maharashtra

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