Indian general insurance workers blast proposed merger

Employees' union holds protest rallies against government plan to merge three insurers to facilitate disinvestment

Indian general insurance workers blast proposed merger

Insurance News

By Gabriel Olano

A union of general insurance workers in India has held several lunch hour demonstrations in major cities, criticising the government’s handling of its state-owned firms.

The General Insurance Employees All-India Association (GEAIA), a trade union of public sector general insurance employees, protested against the Indian government’s policy of disinvestment from its state-owned insurers, and demanded the merger of all four public sector general insurers.

The employees gathered in front of the regional office of United India Insurance Company in Shankar Nagar, Nagpur, reported Indian daily The Hitavada. The protesters were led by Pradeep Dharamthok, working president of GIEAIA.

Finance Minister Arun Jaitley announced in his recent budget speech that three state-owned insurers – National Insurance Co., Oriental Insurance Co., and United India Insurance Co. would be merged into a single entity to facilitate disinvestment. The union slammed the proposal, saying that the government should nationalise the general sector instead of disinvesting from the firms and that the merger should not leave out the fourth public sector insurer New India Assurance Co.

Dharamthok addressed the employees during the protest, saying: “We are again demanding one corporation by merging all [public sector general insurance] companies, including New India Assurance Co., to avoid intra-competition amongst four companies, to manage and prune the management expenses, to financially strengthen these companies, and to effectively meet the challenges posed by private players.”

GIEAIA announced that it would hold more sit-in protests on March 09 in various regional centres and another in front of Parliament during a session later in the month.


Keep up with the latest news and events

Join our mailing list, it’s free!