Workers oppose handling of FCI rice through private port

Loading activity has come to a standstill at the otherwise busy Kakinada Anchorage Port, where the daily labourers have been observing strike for the last nine days.

As many as eight ships were anchored at the port for the loading of rice and maize when the labourers launched the strike on the night of March 12.

Demurrage charges

In all, 95,000 tonnes food grains valued at Rs. 19 crore have to be sent to different countries from the port and the traders are worried about the levying of demurrage charges on account of the delay. Over 8,000 daily labourers too are suffering due to non-availability of work and wages. However, both the parties are expecting the other side to take the initiative to bridge the gap.

The trouble began when the rice belonging to the Food Corporation of India was carted through the private port. Though the regular practice envisages the carting of food grains only through the anchorage port, the FCI authorities took the other route for the first time.

The labourers allege that they were kept in dark over the issue.