Amitabh Bachchan Asked To Intervene, CM Devendra Fadnavis Ready To Meet Industry Workers Tomorrow

The strike by Bollywood workers has intensified. Amitabh Bachchan has now been approached and Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis has opened his door to the workers

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Amitabh Bachchan Asked To Intervene, CM Devendra Fadnavis Ready To Meet Industry Workers Tomorrow
The stalemate between industry workers and Bollywood and TV producers continues but there is a new ray of hope for the FWICE members.

The FWICE (Federation Of Western India Cine  Employees) has been on strike for a week now with 16 of their members on a bhook-hartal currently.

fwice workers go on a hunger strike
FWICE Members Go On A Hunger Strike

But the strike has not delivered the desired effect as the Bollywood and TV producers have not started any talks with the workers who are demanding a pay hike and better working conditions.

The members have now written a letter to superstar Amitabh Bachchan and the members of FWICE will meet Maharashtra CM Devendra Fadnavis tomorrow. 

fwice sends a letter to amitabh bachchan
fwice sends a letter to amitabh bachchan

We have a copy of the letter, it reads: 

Respected Sir, 
As you are aware that the Federation of western India Cine Employees has been working since 1958 for the betterment of its workers, and we have various different crafts of the Entire Media & Entertainment Industry under our umbrella, along with close to 2,50,000 members with the FWICE actively looking after the needs, welfare and benefit of its members. With reference to the above subject matter, we would like to inform you that the FWICE has declared an indefinite strike of its workforce in the entire Media & Entertainment Industry from 15th August 2017.

Sir, you are a role model for all the people working in this Industry. With your kind gesture, you have won hearts of millions and millions of people not only in India but worldwide. For the 
Media & Entertainment Industry you are now a fatherly figure and people respect you with all their hearts. You have always stood behind us whenever there has been a need which arose and with your kind support, advice, understanding and co-operation our battle was always much easier.

You must also be aware of the kind of exploitation that is happening nowadays in the Industry. Workers are compelled to slave without basic facilities such as proper sanitation and hygienic food; deprived of basic needs and timely payments they are made to slog day and night. No ear is being lent by the Producer community to our genuine grievances. Thus the only route available to us as a trade union is going on strike to fight for the legitimate Rights of our Member workers. The Producers have gone back on the promises they made 2 years back and are acting in an autocratic manner. They are refusing to negotiate and are dictating terms and exploiting our workers and technicians.

Below are our demands for which the Producers agreed in 2015 and have not abided with till date:

•     13% increment on the existing rates to be given on all crafts except the 6 crafts ,i.e. Actors, Writers,   DOP, Directors, Editor, Music Director,
•     All payments to the monthly craft to be paid within 15 days of completion of the month,
•     All payments to the other crafts shall be paid upon 60 days from the date of telecast of the episode effective date of implementation to be discussed during meetings,
•     Contracts between producers and contractual technicians/actors to be made mandatory,
•     2nd Sunday Compulsory Holiday agreed principally by the TV Producers- 2nd Sunday to be implemented with effect from 1st April, 2016 and shall only be applicable to daily hindi drama series.
•     4 days holidays to all workers in a month on rotation basis, 2nd Sunday when applicable will be part 4 days and shall only be applicable to daily hind drama series.
•     Adequate safety and security measures to be provided by TV Producers.”

Sir, the producers had passed an increment of 13%, 11%, 11%, 11%, and 12% for the next five years respectively commencing from 2015 onwards. Last year they were supposed to give a hike of 11% in the wages which they didn’t give. We approached them and asked for the 11% hike as promised by them for this year at least which they had promised for. However, they have gone back on their promises and our members are left deprived from their legitimate right.

Few days back they have unilaterally passed increment of 7.5% for this year and 6% for next 4 years which is not acceptable to the FWICE. They had also promised to release the payments of the workers & technicians within 60 days, but till date they continue to pay after 90 days and at times ever more than that. 4 paid holidays per month for the workers were promised by the Producers however, our workers are not given a single leave and they are slogging day and night without any basic facilities. Cream is taken away by the producers and our hard working members are left with the crumbs. We are now in a Do or Die situation. And hence we are uniting in full strength against the dictatorship of the producers who have made the lives of Workers miserable.

We hereby request your kind co-operation in this strike called by the FWICE. FWICE and its affiliates can always battle their own war. But with your help the battle will become easier and will benefit Lakhs of our members who are being exploited day and night by these Producers for their own benefits.

Your co-operation for the Strike will compel the producers to listen and accept the legitimate rights of the Workers and Technicians of this Industry. We request your kind intervention which will enable us to secure the rights of our members.

Hope you as always understand the sentiments and legitimate demands of our workers and extend your wholehearted support and Co-operation for this STRIKE.

Thanking you in anticipation.                                    
Yours faithfully,

Not just Bachchan, FWICE has also approached the CM. FWICE president B.N.Tiwari exclusively told that the Chief Minister’s spokesperson Atul Shah met them today with a message from Fadnavis, who will meet them on Tuesday morning.

A FWICE delegation will meet the CM at his Malabar Hill residence at 10 am. 

shoots at goregaon film city continue despite protests by fwice
FWICE Workers  Protesting Outside Film City Gate

FWICE is fighting with the Producers’ body to fulfill their demands  which includes salary increment, eight-hour shift, accidental and medical insurance. They had went on strike in 2015 too and back then they were given an assurance that their demands would be fulfilled and thus, they called off the strike and went back to work. However, things didn't happen as planned.

fwice members have written a letter to amitabh bachchan
Fwice Members Have Written A Letter To Amitabh Bachchan

Meanwhile, a few shows such as Yeh Rishta Kya Kehlata Hai and Iss Pyaar Ko Kya Naam Doon 3 were affected by the strike.

The shoot of Kaun Banega Crorepati, Padmavati, Shah Rukh Khan’s next and John Abraham’s Parmanu was also affected.

Image Source: aldevine, twitter/SrBachchan & facebook/fwice