The Cochin Port Joint Trade Union Forum has launched an indefinite relay hunger strike in front of the port head office here against the Centre’s move to privatise the port and switch to the land model of business operations.
In a statement, the forum, comprising all trade unions, said the government should not pass the Major Port Trust Authority Act, 2020.
It demanded that the government reconsider the conditions in the licence agreement with the operator of the International Container Transshipment Terminal (ICTT) at Vallarpadam. The conditions should be rewritten in keeping with the interests of the port, the forum said.
The trade unions expressed the view that the expenses for dredging the shipping channel for the Kochi port should be shared by the Cochin Shipyard and the Indian Navy, so that the burden did not fall exclusively on the port trust.
They also said that the smooth operations of the port should be ensured by appointing personnel to vacant posts and streamlining operations.