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Textile workers protest new Provident Fund rules in Bangalore

IT city Bangalore saw protest as thousands of textile workers occupied roads and streets to protest against the government of India’s decision to impose some restrictions on the conditions of Provident Fund (PF) withdrawal, which was withdrawn later on.According to police, the protestors set two Karnataka State Road Transport Corporation buses and one of Bengaluru Metropolitan Transport Corporation bus on fire. They attacked Hebbagodi Police Station and pelted stones at the station building. Several seized vehicles parked in the police station compound were also burned.

Surprisingly, the protestors were gathered at their own will and there were no trade organizations or leaders to head them. The mob went violent in different parts of the city including Bannerghatta, Jalahalli cross, and Electronic City, where the campuses of major IT companies are situated. Bangalore-Mysuru highway and Bangalore-Hosur road, both important roads connecting the IT hub with adjacent cities, were blocked for hours by the protesters. There are about 12 lakh workers in the garment sector of Bangalore. Workers from other sectors also joined the protest.

Following the protests, the government withdrew the condition that workers can withdraw only 50 per cent of their PF savings before retirement and will have to wait till 58 to withdraw the employer’s share of the PF.