Police escorted West Bengal Labour Minister Moloy Ghatak out of the Netaji Indore Stadium in Kolkata on Monday after labourers present during the programme of Self Employed Labour Organisers started throwing chairs and ripped off flex boards.
Thousands of protesters present went berserk towards the end of Ghatak’s speech over their long-pending demand for commission.
As Ghatak’s speech had no mention about the SLO’s commission or the labourers’ salary structure, the crowd inside the stadium lost their patience.
“Demands can’t be fulfilled like this. If we inform CM about it she will definitely do something,” said State Urban Minister Firhad Hakim, who was also present at the programme.
After the minister was safely taken out of the site, the protesters went ahead and occupied the stage and also blocked the road outside the stadium.
The contractual labourers claimed that they were expecting some assurance on their salaries that has been halted since the pandemic broke out in March-April.
For the past few years, SLOs that came under the state labour department were responsible for handing out several social security schemes to the unorganised workers. In return, they use to draw some commissions.
At present, there are around 6,500 SLOs in the state whose commissions have been affected.