Victorious Struggle by RDC Workers in Karnataka

Eight days of militant struggle of complete stoppage by AICCTU led RDC Workers concluded in victory on 4th July. Workers stayed day and night in the company for 8 days and successfully resisted the police force that came in support of management to run the company. Workers refused to sit at the corner to shout slogans, as suggested by police; instead they actively stopped production and movement of vehicles. In a plant in Electronic City, workers braved police lathis and arrests. Union leaders including Shankar, Clifton, Maitreyi, Raghu got workers released within hours. They had to resist police from 4 different stations as plants are spread across the city of Bangalore and had to speak to 2 SPs, 2 DCPs and 4 inspectors. In Kumbalagodu, where police attack on workers was the highest, 100s of workers of various Readymix companies assembled in solidarity with RDC workers and warned police of dire consequences. AICCTU warned of q massive strike by all Readymix company workers in Bangalore and also a massive rally of thousands of workers. AICCTU planned to contact shareholders too as the company is owned by India Value Fund, a mutual fund based company whose seed/foundation capital is owned by some Americans. The Union combined all possible means of struggle including caveats, Labour dept, handling police and finally negotiations. The management’s action of betrayal of bilateral discussions boomeranged in its face and workers went on an all-out struggle against the betrayal. The management was forced to agree for continued employment for all workers despite removal of vehicles, speedy resolution of Charter of Demands, payment of wages for 8 days of complete bandh from 25th June evening to 3rd July, reinstatement of a worker suspended in another issue, considering employment to a worker injured on duty, as major points of the MoU. Workers resorted to flash strike as the company removed 8 vehicles overnight making 20 workers redundant.

AICCTU is a recognized union in RDC Concrete India Pvt Ltd, an all India based corporate company, at Bangalore and has signed two agreements and 2/3rd of contract workers were regularised. The union was negotiating the 3rd agreement when the management intended to sell 8 trans-mixers and to make 20 operators jobless out of total 100 plus workers. The union and workers refused the offer of owning those vehicles and also Voluntary Separation Scheme of 45 days’ salary per year of service. Determined and bold steps of the union, militant struggles of workers combined with swift and timely actions, efficient use of legal machinery, labour department and also skilful negotiations have resulted in the success of the struggle.