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i-maritime news letter

Unions demand steps for smooth operation of Kochi port - 2012-01-02

All the trade unions in Kochi Port, cutting across party affiliations, have unanimously adopted a resolution demanding the port management and the Union Government to ensure smooth operation of the port with financial viability protecting the rights and privileges of the workers. A meeting convened by the unions here has discussed the recent grave situation being faced by the port and its workers including financial constraints. The unions also opposed the “anti labour suggestions of the management” contained in the austerity measures enforced by the Port Trust Chairman with effect from December 1, violating the existing Regulations and Statutory settlements. One of the reasons for the present financial difficulties is due to the payment of incremental dredging cost to maintain 14.5-m deep channel to the ICTT. The unions, therefore, demanded that the incremental dredging cost shall be either borne by the Union Government or arrangements may be made to reimburse the amount to the Port by the user agencies of the channel such as Cochin Shipyard Ltd, Indian Navy and Coast Guard etc. There was also a demand to the Government to sanction procurement of a suitable dredger by the port in order to maintain dredging activities to tide over the recurring financial difficulties. The port management is urged to take effective steps to ensure handling of assured volume of containers at ICTT as envisaged in the licence agreement by settling the various disputes between Customs and SEZ authorities. The unions also said expeditious steps should be taken to recover the various dues from various port users.

Source: Hindu Business Line