Union Labour Minister Bandaru Dattatreya has stated that he wants ” the trade unions to be non-political”. He also opposed the present labour laws which provide outsiders to be office-bearers of the trade unions in organised sector and outsiders should be limited to two in the unorganised sector.
The mindset of the Labour Minister has come out. In India, before independence as also after, the trade unions were having political leaders as office-bearers. This was necessary as the trade union leaders were victimised. The position has not changed even after independence. The trade unions are having their political connection and naturally political leaders also will be there. Neither the trade unions can be non-political. Trade union politics is part of its structure.
The statement of the Labour Minister can only be seen as his frustration due to the recent developments that the government had to withdraw at least three decisions with regard to the EPF, which were strongly opposed by the trade unions.