Business Standard

Kerala govt miffed with HC for asking it to declare strike 'illegal'

The two-day national strike was called on March 28-29 by the trade unions, except the BMS, against the Centre's "anti-people" policies.

Kerala High Court, Kerala HC

Kerala High Court | Photo: Wikipedia

IANS Thiruvananthapuram
The Kerala unit of the CPI-M on Tuesday expressed its displeasure over the Kerala High Court's direction asking the Pinarayi Vijayan government to immediately pass an order declaring the "two-day strike" by its employees as "illegal".
The two-day national strike was called on March 28-29 by the trade unions, except the BMS, against the Centre's "anti-people" policies.
Late on Monday evening, the Vijayan government passed the order but it appeared to have fallen on deaf ears, as for the second day in succession, very few government officials (174 of the 4,824) turned up at the State Secretariat here. Other offices across the state witnessed similar sites.
Expressing his displeasure over the court's order State Secretary of the CPI-M Kodiyeri Balakrishnan said that the right to strike is the right of people and the court coming out against this is not "acceptable."
"Am sure none of you would have forgotten that not so long ago how four Supreme Court judges protested by holding a press meet. One of them later went on to become the Chief Justice. Has such a thing happened before? asked Balakrishnan.
However, he said that there is no 'hartal' declared in the state, shops if opened, need not be closed.
Senior CPI-M leader M.V.Jayarajan, who is also the Kannur district party secretary, said what came from the court's direction clearly indicates that the ghost of the British era is returning.
"Workers have the right to shun work and there can be no two opinions on that and it's not a gratis of the court, instead it's the right of the workers. It's unfortunate that one has to say that the ghost of the bygone British era has returned," said Jayarajan, who few years ago had to spend a few days in jail for his statement against the court.
Meanwhile, since Monday afternoon, the social media posts were pointing out that while the protesters went around closing small shops, the Lulu Mall and the Reliance outlet at Kochi were opened. This morning, the angry protesters turned their ire on the Lulu Mall and blocked the main highway in front of it.
The protesters also asked the Lulu Mall authoroties to ensure that the shops are not opened. The trade union leader leading the protests at the place told the media that the management has assured that it will not be opened.
However, at several places, shops were opened and a state-owned petrol filling station in the capital city had to down its shutters on the insistence of the protestors.
The social media is flooded with posts that such things happen only in Kerala. This is happening at a time when Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan is going around scouting for investments with the hash tag that Kerala is one of the most investor-friendly states in the country.
Another troll said that while the CPI-M workers across the state are protesting and threatening people on the road, the work at the venue of the 23rd Party Congress at Kannur is continuing without any break.
The public, especially the BJP, was infuriated when they learned that in Thrissur, a coperative bank, which is led by a CPI-M state committee member M.K.Kannan, who is also the vice chairman of the Kerala Bank, was found to be functioning with the front shutters closed.

(Only the headline and picture of this report may have been reworked by the Business Standard staff; the rest of the content is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)

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First Published: Mar 29 2022 | 1:05 PM IST

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