Mamata urges people to foil strike, CPI-M says it will be a success

February 27th, 2012 - 10:41 pm ICT by IANS  

Mamata Banerjee Kolkata, Feb 27 (IANS) As West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Monday urged people to foil the nationwide Feb 28 industrial strike and threatened harsh action against those who try to implement the shut-down forcefully, the opposition CPI-M said her words betrayed a fear that the strike would be a massive success.

“I appeal to the masses not to respond to the strike. A strike will rob daily labourers of their earnings,” Banerjee said.

Accusing the Left parties of calling the strike in order to prove their political mettle, Banerjee assured the people that the government has taken necessary steps to keep trains, trams and buses running in the state.

“If any government staff takes part in the strike, then the government will take steps. All government employees should attend their respective offices. The former Left Front government used to help in making the strike a success. But we will not do it,” she said.

The government has also issued circulars barring government employees from taking leave on the day of the strike.

Eleven central trade unions, including INTUC, BMS, CITU, AITUC, UTUC, AIUTUC, HMS, TUCI and NLO, will participate in Tuesday’s general shut-down, demanding steps for controlling the rise in prices of essential commodities and creation of more employment opportunities.

“This politics of shutdown and strikes have crippled the state for the last 35 years. When I am trying to usher in development, the opposition is trying to create problems,” she said.

“If the pro-strike protesters try to implement the strike forcefully, then the government will take appropriate steps to keep everything normal,” she said.

“Nobody should force the common people to participate in the strike,” the chief minister added.

Responding to Banerjee’s stance, the CPI-M Monday alleged she was afraid that the strike would be a big success.

“And that is why she is trying to terrorise the government employees so that they cannot participate in the strike,” Leader of Opposition and CPI-M leader Surya Kanta Misra said.

“I think she will get a befitting reply when the shut-down becomes successful tomorrow,” Misra said.

The government has promised that over 1,000 state government buses will hit the roads. Transport Minister Madan Mitra said he has met taxi, mini-bus, private bus and auto-rickshaw operators and requested them to deploy their full fleet.

Police presence will be increased at the airport premises to maintain unhindered air services.

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