Thousands of Indian workers across 18 states gather in Delhi to protest new labour codes

New Delhi, November 18 (KMS): Thousands of Indian workers carried out a massive rally in New Delhi to dissent against the new labour codes passed by the country’s parliament.

Around five thousand workers, academicians and students from 18 states across India gathered for the demonstration organised by Mazdoor Adhikar Sangharsh Abhiyan (MASA).

The new labour codes, namely the Code on Wages, Industrial Relations Code, Social Security Code and the Occupational Safety, Health and Working Conditions Code are set to replace the existing 29 labour laws soon.

The protesters’ key collective demand is to repeal the new four labour codes passed by the Indian parliament in 2019 and 2020.

The main concern exhibited is that the new codes pave the way for further privatization of public sectors by allowing exemptions to new industrial establishments.

The right to bonus payment and provision of attaining full wages if the suspension period exceeds 180 days have also been taken away, protesters said.

Another important concern is that the code makes it even more difficult for labour unions to exist within organizations and industries in India, they said.

The workers have raised the demand for an end to contractual hiring, provision for permanent and secure employment and a monthly minimum wage of Rs 26,000, keeping the rising inflation in mind.

Speakers consisted of intellectuals, leaders and representatives from sixteen organizations within MASA.


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