3 METRO FRIDAY, 8 MARCH, 2013
Mumbai turns back on call for strike Despite a call for a nationwide workers’ strike on February 20 and 21 by trade unions across India, Mumbai lived up to its reputation of ceaselessness by continuing business as usual on both days. Incidents of unrest were reported in small pockets of the city, with two BEST buses (public transport) being pelted with stones in suburban Mumbai on the 20th morning.
workers. The only sector which reportedly suffered a blow was the financial sector, with banks, insurance companies and other commercial establishments remaining shut on the first day of the strike.
Members of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions staged a protest near a railway station in a suburb in Mumbai. Media reports claim that the protestors intended to disrupt train services by gathering on the railway tracks but were prevented from doing so by the police.
"For the first time all trade unions have come together for a two-day strike as government has not take any action to look into the problems of sky rise inflation, disinvestment in public sector units and non- implementation of labour laws," said Gurudas Dasgupta, general secretary of the All India Trade Union Congress (AITUC), which was also participating in the strike, in an interview to a national daily.
News reports also state that civic services in the city remained largely unaffected, recording a total 93% attendance by the
The strike was observed on a larger scale in North India, with cases of violence being reported from Noida near New Delhi.
A protestor shouts during a rally by the AITUC (a traders’ union) outside a station in suburban Mumbai on 20 February 2013. Anushree Fadnavis / Mumbai Weekly
Active kids perform better, says study
Children play cricket early in the morning at a park in central Mumbai on 20 February 2013. Jayshree Kewalramani / Mumbai Weekly.
Rail accidents reduce in Mumbai
A man walks on the railway tracks in central Mumbai on 20 February 2013. Media reports indicate that the incidents of accidents caused by people crossing tracks has reduced. Francis Mascarehnas / Mumbai Weekly.
Mumbai to set sail to stay afloat over traffic woes In what might be an effective solution to ease traffic congestion in the city, the Water Resource Ministry’s Expert Appraisal Committee has approved the construction of a 55km long passenger waterway along the Mumbai coastline. A similar setup for ferrying cargo, however, has not been approved for the time being.
People travel by a ferry boat off the coast of Versova in suburban Mumbai on 23 February 2013. Debadatta Mallick / Mumbai Weekly.
The committee has approved the setting up of six water transport terminals: at Nariman Point, Bandra, Juhu, Versova, Marve and Borivali, spanning the length of the city
from the South to the suburbs. The project proposed by Maharashtra State Road Development Corporation is estimated to cost Rs. 750 crore (approx. USD 14 billion). The transport system will require several offshore infrastructural facilities like terminal buildings and access roads and other amenities such as ticket counters, arrival and departure lounges, restaurants and shops. However, strict restrictions have been imposed by the committee in order to ensure little harm is done to the environment. For instance,
reclamation of land for the project is not allowed. Approval from the Bombay High Court will also need to be sought to cut down 1000 sq metres of mangroves to build access roads and also to ensure that the waterways do not obstruct the route of fishing vessels in the city. According to media reports, Water Resource Ministry officials claim that Mumbai will be the first of many international quality waterways in the country. Similar projects have been proposed for the states of Goa, Kerala and Tamil Nadu, with