HIMALAYAN NEWS SERVICE
ITAHARI: While there have been calls to put an end to strikes in the nation as an effort to strengthen the national economy, the trade union leaders in Itahari have demanded to incorporate the ‘right to strike’ as a fundamental right in the new constitution.
The trade union leaders, addressing the inaugural session of the third Koshi Zonal conference of General Federation of Nepalese Trade Unions (GFONT), today warned of a stir if the right to strike was not incorporated in the constitution.
GFONT national committee chairman and lawmaker Bishnu Rimal revealed they had proposed to enlist the right in the statute. “The industrialists are afraid of the word ‘strike’,” he said, adding, “So we have proposed to have it as a fundamental right.”
Rimal said the workers were ready to come to the streets if the constitution failed to incorporate
the right to strike in the constitution.
The GFONT panel chairman also said though all the trade unions were ready to fight for a raise in their wages, the Maoist-affiliated trade union was not serious about it.
Rimal divulged that the Maoist trade union had put off the protest till a new government takes shape.
He argued that the provision of the right to employment and equal wage irrespective of gender, religion, caste and class had to be incorporated in the constitution.
He stressed the need to include workers in the policy-making level, saying “A trade union leader like me can then compete with an industrialist like Binod Choudhari.”
“Even a rickshaw-puller should be made a lawmaker to procure the rights of the workers,” he said.
At the programme, GFONT vice-chairman Chudamani Jangali claimed that the workers in the industries were treated like machines and stressed on the necessity of a campaign to end discrimination against workers. UML leaders Rewati Raman Bhandari and Jeevan Ghimire, and GFONT central leaders had attended the conference.