Union Textile Minister Smriti Irani was asked to urgently intervene and resolve the finalization of wages to be paid to the National Textile Corporation (NTC) mills by trade union representatives from Coimbatore in Tamil Nadu.
The seven NTC mills in Tamil Nadu employed around 1,400 confirmed workers. On May 31, 2018, the four-year wage agreement of these workers had expired.
T.S. Rajamani, coordinator of HMS, AITUC, MLF, BMS, and Dr. Ambedkar Union for NTC workers issued a press release stating, the unions had sent their wage hike demand to the Southern Region office of NTC seeking 50 % increase in basic wages and making permanent those workers who have worked for 480 days.
The release further stated, “They also sought Rs. 421 a day for casual workers. Since the management neither invited them for proper talks nor arrived at a solution, demand meetings were held and workers wore demand cards to the mills. On August 7, a group of trade union leaders met the Union Minister and sought her intervention. The Minister assured them that necessary steps would be taken. It is said that a meeting would be held on August 16 here in this regard.”
M. Arumugam of AITUC explained the need for ministerial intervention, stating, the talks between the unions and the management was not progressing. He further stated, “In Kerala, the revised wages have been finalised. In Tamil Nadu, the talks should be held. We also want the management to call all the unions for talks as there is a case going on about the recognised unions for NTC workers. We (the unions) have sent our demands individually and jointly to the NTC management. The Minister said she will take action.”