KOCHI: The Kerala High Court has issued an interim order directing the Commissioner of Police, Kochi, to provide adequate police protection to cargo handling workers who were ready to resume work at the Cochin Port.
The order was issued while admitting the writ petition filed by the Cochin Port authorities on Friday. A press release issued by the port authorities said that the court had also directed the police to remove obstructions caused by the workers participating in the strike.
The port authorities had also appealed before the High Court that workers should not resort to illegal strike. It had also requested the court to declare the strike illegal. The writ petition had also urged the court to issue an order saying that the striking unions/ workers were accountable for the losses suffered by the port due to the illegal strike.
The press release said several workers had pointed out that they were not able to report for duty due to threats from the striking workers. They had requested the authorities to provide protection while reporting for duty.
Cochin Port authorities also said that Cochin Port Staff Association, Cochin Port Employees Organisation, Cochin Port Wharf Staff Association, and Cochin Port Labour Union have appealed to the workers to report for duty and normalise the port operations, as the demands of the striking workers were unjustifiable and illegal.
The release also said that some of the workers have started reporting for duty from second shift on Friday. The chairman of the Cochin Port Trust has also appealed to all workers to resume duty and restore normalcy at the earliest in view of the High Court order and the appeal made by the trade unions.