Pre-budget meets are conducted annually, under which representatives of different sectors give their suggestions and raise queries that are to be solved by implementing the Budget plan.
Recently, a joint forum of ten central trade unions has decided to boycott the virtual pre-budget meeting with Finance minister Nirmala Sitharam that is to be conducted on November 28. They demanded that the meeting should be held offline, with the speakers receiving reasonable time to express their concerns.
The forum sent a letter on Friday which mentioned that the email received on November 25, 2022, shared that the central trade union will be allowed to speak for three minutes. They have strictly mentioned that this is a joke and they will not be associated with any kind of joke.
They have strongly denied that they will not participate in the proposed video conference that is scheduled on November 28, 2022.
The forum has jointly protested against the limited video conference for pre-budget consultations in a letter earlier on Friday.
They have stated that they feel constrained to express their disappointment in conducting the meeting in the virtual media despite the relaxation of the Covid-19 cases. The meeting would be conducted for twelve minutes and include twelve central trade unions.
Three minutes to speak is a joke: Central Trade Unions
The labor ministry has verified that there will be 12 central trade unions at the conference. It implies that each organization will get less than five minutes or less if there is any time for customary open remarks to be brought into account.
Previously, on Friday, the forum received another letter from the finance ministry. The letter mentioned that each person in the trade union would be given three minutes to make their suggestion regarding the matter.
The forum sent another letter on Friday in response to the issue stating that the Central Trade Unions have therefore decided to boycott the proposed video conference.
The Forum has requested the finance ministry to take the matter into serious concern asking that a physical meeting should be organized and must provide proper time for the speakers so that effective consultations can take place through the pre-budget meeting with the trade unions.
In addition, the forum has invited the Finance minister to the meeting without any time constraints so they have sufficient time to defend the policies followed by her and bring amendments to the protocols followed.
The ten central trade unions who were called for the conference were INTUC, AITUC, TUCC, SEWA, HMS, CITU, AITTU, LPF, AIUTUC, and UTUC.
There are many central trade unions in the country, including the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh. However, the latter is not a part of the joint forum party.
Many states, including some that are governed by the BJP, have urged the Forum to stop the reliance on increasing revenues through cesses and surcharges which will reduce the contribution on the divisible pool of taxes. They have even asked to provide great fiscal support that would help to bring the Indian economy back to its foot and reiterated the demands for the Goods and Service Tax Compensation period.
Many other issues were cleared in the federal fiscal framework, where they discussed the States’ local project wishlists. Many prominent members were part of the pre-meet, including the cabinet of chief ministers, deputy chief ministers as well as the Finance Ministers of the states.
Bihar finance minister Vijay Kumar Choudhary has stated that the centrally sponsored schemes should be limited as the load on states for such schemes is increasing considerably.
He has added that the center should implement Central schemes if they want to help the states.
Meghalaya’s Chief Minister has demanded an increase in the capital assistance that is provided to the states. More emphasis should be given to the village schemes.
Edited by Prakriti Arora