People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 21

June 02,2002

CITU Gets Thumping Victory In KSRTC

 Aboo Backer


THE Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) has achieved a thumping victory in the referendum held in the Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC). Far ahead of other organisations, the CITU-affiliated KSRTC Employees Association won the support of 50.93 per cent of the total workforce and of 53.81 per cent of the workers who exercised their votes. The INTUC-led Transport Democratic Federation (TDF) came second with 27.63 per cent of the votes.


The referendum was held to decide the organisations that would represent the KSRTC employees in formal and official proceedings --- from placing charters of demands to holding negotiations. According to the referendum results, the CITUís and the INTUCís are the only unions that would now represent the KSRTC workers in such proceedings. The reason is that only such organisations get the status of approved organisations as are able to secure a minimum 20 per cent support. 


The AITUC-led TWCC lost in the referendum, though it had got approval in the 1977 referendum. The INTUC, which did not get approval in the last referendum, managed to get approval this time for its TDF. The Drivers 92 Union, which had supported the AITUC in the last referendum, changed side this time and supported the INTUC. It will be noted that the Drivers 92 Union is a pro-Kerala Congress (B) organisation led by R Balakrishna Pillai, leading figure in transport minister K B Ganeshkumarís party. The Congress leadership and the Kerala Congress (B) had been entangled in a controversy about running the KSRTC; it was the Congress leadership that had precipitated this controversy in order to capture the Drivers 92 Union.


Support for the CITU has improved in all senses --- in terms of total number of employees as well as the vote percentage.



THE Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) has launched a statewide agitation against the UDF governmentís move to mortgage the state of Kerala to the Asian Development Bank. Under the DYFIís banner, tens of thousands of youth joined these dharnas that were held at all area headquarters in the state. Those joining the dharnas asked the UDF leaders to say no to the ADB conditionalities that include stop to appointments in government and public sector undertakings and withdrawal of the government from all provisions hitherto made for the common people, thus restricting governance to protection of the vested interests.