Nationwide strike cripples life in Tripura

Agartala, Sep 7 (Calcutta Tube) The nationwide industrial strike called by major trade unions to protest increasing prices and privatisation crippled life in Left-ruled Tripura.

‘The strike was total with people expressing their anger against price rise, retrenchment, underpayment, poverty and many of the economic policies of the UPA (United Progressive Alliance) government,’ Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) leader Pijush Nag told reporters here.

Most markets, shops and business establishments, government and semi-government offices, educational institutions, banks and financial institutions were shut in the state. Roads were deserted and rail services between Tripura and the rest of the country were also affected.

However, air services on the Agartala-Kolkata and Agartala-Guwahati routes were normal, an Agartala airport official told IANS.

‘The 24-hour shutdown remained peaceful. No untoward incident was reported from anywhere,’ police spokesperson Nepal Das told IANS.

Buses between Tripura and Bangladesh and other northeastern states were hit.

‘The India-Bangladesh trade was also badly hit as hundreds of trucks were stranded on the other sides of the Akhaurah checkpost near here due to the shutdown,’ a customs official here said.

Major trade unions including CITU, backed by the state’s ruling Communist Party of India-Marxist (CPI-M), the Indian National Trade Union Congress (INTUC), the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC) and the Hind Mazdoor Sabha (HMS), have called the strike in support of five demands.

These include proper implementation of labour laws, no privatisation of profit-making public sector undertakings, providing enough money for unorganised workers’ social security fund, and employment for those who lost their jobs during the global economic meltdown.

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