Today, not a single shoot will go on floors in Mumbai, the entertainment capital of India. This is in response to the indefinite strike called by the Federation of Western India Cine Employees (FWICE). The strike has been called to protest the alleged unlawful detainment of five members of FWICE namely Kamlesh Pandey, Dilip Pithva, Zahid Sheikh, Feroz Khan Raja and Sudhakar Sharma. FWICE allege that they have been detained unlawfully at BKC police station at the behest of a bogus assault case filed by the Registrar of Trade Unions. FWICE also allege that chief mischief maker Gangeshwarlal Shrivastav was let go scot free without any inquiry.
In a letter written to all producer bodies, FWICE has made clear their decision to go on an indefinite strike starting today and has sought support from all concerned bodies.
We spoke to Sanjay Singh, an integral member of Allied Mazdoor Union who confirmed the strike and said, “Yes, we are on an indefinite strike from today in response to the call given by FWICE which is the mother body of all other unions. This strike has been called to protest the wrongdoings of the Registrar of the Trade Union in collusion with Gangeshwar Shrivastav. Gangeshwar along with Deepak Shrivastav, Ambi Shrivastav, Rakesh, Lal Bahadur Jaiswal, Mangal Yadav were expelled by the Federation (FWICE) for indulging in goondaism, hafta vasooli, illegally stalling shoots and many other similar activities. The federation expelled them, dissolved their committee and announced new election dates on 23rd January. Gangeshwar tried his best to stop the election and even moved the courts but nothing worked. Elections happened and I won the post of general secretary, Prem Singh Thakur became the Chairman, Abdul Ghani, senior vice chairman.”
Real trouble started brewing two days back when Gangeshwar allegedly threatened Dilip Pithva of FWICE. “Two days earlier when Dilip Pithva, general secretary of FWICE went to the trade union office where he was threatened with dire consequences by Gangeshwar. So when we attended the hearing today in relation to that at the registrar’s office, Ganesghwar forced his way into the registrar’s office and threatened again by saying that if we say anything more, he will bring in 100 more goondas. Now FIR has been registered in BKC police station against Gangeshwar. Our men who were detained were Dilip Pithva, President of FWICE, Kamlesh Pandey, Dilip Pithva, Zahid Sheikh, Feroz Khan Raja and Sudhakar Sharma. Thankfully, they have been released for the moment and Kamlesh bhai told me that Aamir saab (Aamir Khan) had put in a word with the CP (commissioner of police). We are holding a strike today and all bodies will be meeting to discuss the further cause of action.”
Tellychakkar.com will keep you posted on further developments.
(Produced above is the copy of the letter announcing strike)