Salt corporation workers threaten to lock bank branch

19 Dec 2016 Ferado

INDIA: Hit by severe cash crunch after demonetisation of Rs. 500 and Rs. 1,000 notes, the contract and regular women workers of Tamil Nadu Salt Corporation Limited have decided to surrender their bank passbooks and lock the branch of Indian Overseas Bank (IOB) at Keezha Selvanoor to register their protest.

Working Women Forum (WWF) of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), which discussed the problem faced by the daily wage workers at the Corporation’s community hall at Valinokkam on Sunday, adopted a resolution to surrender the passbooks and lock the branch on December 26.

A large number of women workers who participated in the meeting, chaired by M. Mala, district convenor of the WWF, said the demonetisation move had badly affected their normal life as they could not draw money from the bank for the second month now.

The Corporation, which had been paying their salaries in cash before demonetisation, credited their salaries in their bank accounts after the cash crunch started, forcing them to stand at the bank branches for long hours for days together to draw a paltry sum of Rs. 2,000 from their accounts, they said.

The women, who worked from 5 a.m. to 1 p.m. in salt pans, spent the afternoon by taking up farm work and other odd jobs to supplement their family income, but were now standing at the bank branches, H. John Soundararaj, CITU district president, who attended the meeting, said.

As the women could not draw money from the bank, the women folk struggled to purchase provisions, milk and vegetables for day-to-day living, he said.

Sivagaji, district secretary, would lead the agitation on December 26, when the workers would surrender their bank pass books, after which, he would lock the IOB Valinokkam branch, located at Keezha Selvanoor, Mr. Soundararaj said.

There were about 1,400 women workers employed in the Corporation and nearly 700 of them had their accounts in the branch, he added.