Due to wage disagreements between workers and the management at Nhava Sheva International Container Terminal (NSICT) shipping operations at Nhava Sheva port near Mumbai were badly hit on October 22. This comes at a time when the government is trying to push exports to address the problem of an expanding current account deficit.
NSICT is an associate company of DP World of Dubai and has Jawaharlal Nehru Port Trust (JNPT) as a partner. The disruptions in the entire port area, which also has the government-run JNPT and privately-owned GTI, started after labour troubles at NSICT on October 15.
The port's labour union alleged that NSICT had declared a lockout which was illegal. This was denied by the company. On its part, NSICT alleged that trouble started after labourers adopted a 'go slow' strategy. The three ports together handle the largest volume of containers in India.
Police said that because of the strike, multi-axle trailers which were unable to enter the ports were stranded along the road leading towards JNPT area.
Sources said that some foreign shipping companies have started calling off ships from coming to the ports at these facilities due to the slow movement of cargo. According to data from the Indian Ports Association, JNPT alone handled 64.5 million tonne of traffic in 2012-13 which ranked it as the second biggest port in India.