In the interests of the workers and technicians of the Mumbai Film and TV industry, and to protect their legitimate rights and remuneration, Federation of Western India Cine Employees to which Film Writers’ Association is affiliated with, has called GENERAL NON-COOPERATION & STRIKE starting May 6, 2015. If any member is violating the said GENERAL NON-COOPERATION & STRIKE, strict disciplinary action will be taken against such erring member by FWICE as per the decision passed in the General Council held on 17th April 2015. All FWA members are, therefore, requested to NEITHER ATTEND ANY MEETING WITH FILM & TV PRODUCERS AND TV CHANNELS NOR DELIVER ANY WORK TO THEM.
1) Increase in wage hike proportional to the huge rise in cost of living over the past five years where wages of daily wage workers increased by only 35% and contractuals not at all.
2) All payments to be made on time to all artistes, workers & technicians within a period of 1 month and no later
3) Shooting should not extend beyond the stipulated time period of 12 hours
4) Proper safety precautions and insurance for workers on sets
5) Increase in base rate of contractuals
6) Formal letter stating terms of engagement to all workers & technicians
Help the FWICE help you & stand shoulder to shoulder with your brothers & sisters at SANKRAMAN STUDIOS on MAY 6th 2015!!
LET US MAKE THIS STRIKE A COMPLETE SUCCESS!!!
LONG LIVE OUR UNITY!!!
Hon. General Secretary
फ़िल्म रायटर्स एसोशिएशन के सदस्यों के ध्यानार्थ
मुंबई फिल्म और टेलीविजन इंडस्ट्री के तकनीशियनों और कामगारों के हितों, पारिश्रमिक और उनके अधिकारों की रक्षा के लिए फेडरेशन ऑफ़ वेस्टर्न इंडिया सिने एम्प्लाइज ने आगामी 6 मई से GENERAL NON-COOPERATION & STRIKE की घोषणा की है. फिल्म रायटर्स एसोसिएशन फेडरेशन से सम्बद्ध है, इसलिए इस GENERAL NON-COOPERATION & STRIKE में सभी लेखकों और गीतकारों को भी इसका समर्थन करना है. जो सदस्य लेखक इसका पालन नहीं करेंगे, उनके खिलाफ 17 अप्रैल 2015 को फेडरेशन में पास निर्णय के मुताबिक कठोर अनुशासनात्मक कार्रवाई की जायेगी. इसलिए सभी सदस्य लेखकों और गीतकारों से आग्रह है कि वे किसी फिल्म या टीवी प्रोड्यूसर अथवा टीवी चैनल के साथ ना मीटिंग करें और न ही उन्हें कोई काम करके दें.
Additional information which tries to answer the questions that you or your friends from the media may have. Please read and spread it around widely to counter negative publicity, if any, and put the actual facts across.
HERE IS WHY 2.5 LAC WORKERS AND TECHNICIANS OF THE MUMBAI FILM & TV INDUSTRY ARE GOING ON A STRIKE FROM MAY6,2015!
Certain sections in the mass media have portrayed a one-sided view of the situation arising from the NON-COOPERATION & STRIKE call by the FWICE starting May 6,2015.
No association affiliated to the FWICE is in favour of a strike. In fact members of all the 22 craft associations affiliated to the FWICE have been waiting anxiously for the new MoU reflecting the Terms & Conditions and a Reasonable and Fair Increase in the wages mutually agreed between the FWICE and the Producers Associations which was due on March 1,2015 because the previous MoU signed in 2010 had expired on Feb.28, 2015. The FWICE sent the new MoU to all the four Producers Associations on March 16, 2015.
Result? No response even after three reminders, not even an official acknowledgement of receipt of the draft MoU.
When there is high- handed behaviour, arrogance, refusal to abide by time- honoured traditions, refusal to even discuss the working conditions and a reasonable and fair increase in wages that are long overdue, and above all refusal to even acknowledge receipt of the draft MoU accompanied by veiled threats in the sole letter that emanated from the three Producers Associations, a breakdown of the machinery of constructive dialouge could safely be assumed. And it is then, and only THEN when no hope in the IMMEDIATE FUTURE is visible, that the last resort of a lawful STRIKE call with DUE NOTICE in place has been given.
Let us analyze in some detail the reasons for the same :
1) REFUSAL TO RENEW MoU
Every five years a Memorandum of Understanding is signed between the Producer Associations (IMPPA, IFTPC, FTPG) and the FWICE. The contents of the MoU are as follows:
- A) A pledge of member-to-member working to facilitate smooth, transparent and accountable system of working from both sides.
- B) Quantum of annual wage increase for the members of the 22 affiliates.
- C) General rules and regulations for the working of the Film & TV industry.
The Producers Associations have point blank refused to renew the new MoU which makes them accountable for conditions provided to workers and cites minimum working hours and wages.
The reason they have cited is an inquiry that has been ordered by the Competition Commission into the functioning of the Film & TV Industry and the contents of the MoU.
Expert legal opinion sought has revealed that there is no directive from the Competition Commission as cited by the Producer Associations, not to sign the MOU, but only an inquiry. The Producer Associations are using the same as an EXCUSE to escape being accountable and to DELAY a justified, reasonable and fair increase in wages compatible with the rate of inflation which has skyrocketed in the last five years but the wages of workers and technicians of the film and TV industry have remained what they were five years ago.
2) REFUSAL TO OFFICIALLY MEET FOR TALKS
The Producer Associations refused to even acknowledge receipt of the draft copy of the MoU for six weeks, despite three reminders having been sent.
Only after an ultimatum was provided by the FWICE with a given time frame for implementation did all the Producers Associations respond, and that to with a concerted response that was for all practical purposes SIMILAR to each other’s letter, that was ABRUPT, RUDE & a point blank REFUSAL to sign the MoU. There was not even an offer to meet for talks regarding the same.
3) REFUSAL TO NEGOTIATE WAGE HIKE
There was no mention in the reply from the Producers of the wage hike for workers that ideally should have been in place from March 1st, 2015.
Are the workers expected to suffer endlessly through the numerous delaying tactics employed by the Producer Associations to defer even negotiations pertaining to the quantum of wage hike, let alone implementation of the same?
4) REFUSAL FOR BEING ACCOUNTABLE & RESPONSIBLE FOR SAFETY CONDITIONS ON THE SET
The very basic safety procedures are neglected to be provided by Producers to workers on Film & TV sets. Precautions like safety harnesses, solid platforms, fixed working hours not exceeding the maximum of 8 hours prescribed by the Labour Commission, are ignored and neglected in a bid to save a few extra bucks or in gross neglect of responsibility. There have been several instances of actors, directors and crew being hospitalized after punishing schedules and even deaths on the sets of lightmen and other workers due to lack of basic safety procedures.
Is the FWICE wrong in insisting that these basic systems be put in place and made compulsory?
Is the life of a film worker so cheap?
5) ATTEMPT TO SABOTAGE THE MoU, BY THEIR MEMBER VIPUL A. SHAH BY A CAMPAIGN OF SYSTEMATIC MISINFORMATION TO THE COMPETITION COMMISSION.
One Mr. Vipul A. Shah, a Film Producer, and a “Former” member of the Film & TV Producers Guild, in an alleged effort to undermine the strength of the FWICE, has allegedly indulged in a campaign of systematic misinformation before the Competition Commission of India, in an alleged effort to facilitate an escape route for Producers by dividing workers and thereby compelling them to work at rates that can be “mutually negotiated” read “DICTATED by Producers”.
It is only the unity of the affiliates of the FWICE, that prevents such an occurrence, which God forbid if occurs, could well signal the death knell for workers, technicians and artistes alike in the Film & TV industry.
Curiously, instead of taking a proper action against their own member whose complaint to the Competition Commission has brought the entire Mumbai Film & TV industry to this unfortunate crisis, they are using it as an excuse to delay discussion and signing of the MoU. There must be something really fishy because Mr.Vipul A. Shah filed the complaint to the Competition Commission almost a year and a half ago but the letter sent by Competition Commission arrived just on the eve of the new MoU! The letter of enquiry from Competition Commission dated June 7,2014 reaches the FWICE and its affiliates in March 2015! Is it just a coincidence or a conspiracy, anyone can guess.
Therefore, till a satisfying resolution is reached between the FWICE and the Producers Associations, the NON-COPERATION & STRIKE starting May 6,2015 is on.
If the strike continues, we have to keep it peaceful and organized, no disruption of any kind and no disturbance to the law and order situation is expected from our members.