A two-day nation-wide general strike called by central trade unions against the anti-labour politices of the Modi Government hit public transport and banks services in Tamil Nadu and neighbouring Union Territory of Puducherry on Tuesday.
In Tamil Nadu, metropolitan transport corporations maintained skeleton services with the help of employees affiliated to the unions of AIADMK and the B JP. But inter-State buse services to Andhra Pradesh from Tirutani, to Kerala from Nagercoil and to Bengaluru from Hosur were halted on the borders.
With major bank unions affiliated to the CITU, AITUC and other central trade unions joining the strike, bank services were totally crippled on the first day itself with only ATMs functioning. The bank employees have been opposing the proposal to merge weaker ones with strong ones like the SBI and structure their bad debts.
The strike also affected public sector companies like BHEL in Tiruchi and the Neyveli Lignite Corporation in Neyveli.
In neighbouring Puducherry, town buses plied but services to Tamil Nadu were affected with striking employees blocking buses. Normal life was affected as most shops and establishment remained shut in response to the hartal call.
The central trade unions contended that Trade Union (Amendment) Bill of 2018 cleared by the Union Cabinet would take away the trade union rights of the working class.
They said the strike was being supported by port and dock workers, bank and insurance company employees as well as those working in the telecom sector like BSNL
They said employees of Baba Atomic Research Centre and the Kalpakkam atomic plant affiliated to the CITU and the AiTUC were also supporting the strike to press their demand to scrap the new pension scheme and restore the one one.