Mumbai: At least sixty licensed porters went on a one-day silent strike and staged a demonstration at Mumbai Central station on Friday. The porters were demanding that they be included in the group D category of railways. The group D category of staffers includes cleaners, gangmen and trackman staffers of railways.
On Friday, at least 80 porters did not report to work. There are at least 150 porters working at Mumbai Central terminus. The strike began at 7:30am and continued for at least 12 hours. “Out of the total 150 porters, at least 80 porters have not been included in the group D category. The staffers under this category are provided with facilities of yearly ticket pass and medical facilities,” said Prakash Kute, a member of Mumbai Central Licence Porter Union.
The porters also alleged that they their income has reduced as passengers do not prefer taking help of porters. “During Diwali and summer vacation, we earn a minimum of Rs200 per day. Otherwise, we do not earn a single penny during off-season. Passengers use wheeled luggage bags and drag their luggages easily,” added Kute.
The porters also alleged that they do not receive proper medical facilities as they do not fall under the group D category. “We are not facilitated with expenses for medical surgeries. With no income, it becomes difficult for us to cater to medical expenses of our family members,” said Ashok Shelke, a porter at Mumbai Central.
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