K M Dayashankar
PEDDAPALLI: Coal production came to a grinding halt in the Singareni Collieries Company Limited in entire north Telangana region following the 72-hour strike call given by the Telangana Boggu ghani Karmika sangham, recognised trade union of Singareni and five national trade unions viz AITUC, INTC, CITU, BMS and HMS on the first day on Thursday.
All the trade unions have called for a three-day strike in protest against the Union government decision to privatise and auction of four coal blocks in the Singareni region. Stating that the privatisation of the coal products would prove detrimental in the interest of the Singareni and the workforce, the trade unions demanded the Union government to withdraw the proposed auctioning of four coal blocks of Singareni.
The strike was total in all the 23 underground mines and 19 open cast projects in entire coal belt region of north Telangana districts. More than 42,000 regular employees and 25,000 odd contract workers were participating in the strike. In the meantime, the officials of Singareni have also announced their support to the strike and attending to their duties by wearing black badges. The strike attained significance following Chief Minister K Chandrashekhar Rao also writing a letter to the Union government opposing the auctioning of the four coal blocks of Singareni.
TGBKS founder president Kengerla Mallaiah said that the strike was total and complete in entire coal belt regions of Singareni. Stating that the complete success of the strike was evident against the Union government decision to privatise the coal blocks, he demanded the government to rethink about its decision to privatise the coal blocks of Singareni. He also threatened to intensify the agitational programmes if the government fails to withdraw its decision.