NEW DELHI: The All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC) on Saturday took strong exception to Narendra Modi-led central government’s alleged anti working class policies, and demanded an immediate course correction.
The oldest trade union in India was referring to the recent “arbitrary decision” of the BJP government to freeze the Dearness Allowance (DA) due to the central government employees and Dearness Relief (DR) due to the pensioners.
“Taking shelter under the umbrella of COVID-19, every day the government is taking one or other decisions to attack the working class who are already in deep crisis, distress after the lockdown in the country,” the trade union said in a statement.
The finance ministry on Thursday froze inflation-linked allowance for 48 lakh central government employees and 61 lakh pensioners till June 2021 due to the COVID-19 crisis.
“The cabinet had already approved in March to release 4 per cent additional DA to the central government employees and pensioners in accordance with the increase in All India Consumer Price Index. Instead of issuing the government order to implement the decision, the Ministry of Finance issued an order on 23/04/2020 freezing DA of Central Govt. Employees numbering 48 lakhs (including Armed Forces) and 65 Lakhs pensioners which includes 60 percent, ex-serviceman who defended the country during their service life,” the union said.
By not paying the increased DA to the employees and pensioners for 18 months the government is going to save more than Rs 50,000 crores. “This savings will go to whom? Whether to the corporate houses or to the suffering workers of this country?” the union asked.
“The government is not contemplating to withdraw any of the tax concessions including the recently reduced Corporate Tax which benefitted them to the tune of 1.45 lakh crore given to the big corporate,” the trade union pointed out.
“The government had in the last five and half years written off the loans of these Corporates to the tune of Rs 7,70,000 crore. Above all that there are more than Rs 13 lakh crore of pending loans called NPAs to be recovered from these corporate houses. It is the fact on parliament records that the tax recovery to the tune of over Rs 8 lakh crore is pending in which the major defaulters again are these corporate,” it said.
The AITUC urged upon the government to immediately withdraw this anti-labour decision.