Indian boat owners’ strike.
Since yesterday [July 23] all Indian cargo boat owners in Rangoon who particularly monopolise cargo boat supplies for the port have been on strike. They allege as reason for their action that whenever their boats were alongside European, Japanese, Singapore, and China bound steamers they are not so liable for prosecution for alleged breaches of port rules as when B.I. Steamers and Asiatic steamers are loading for Indian ports in which case the boat owner has to pay Rs. 300 to Rs. 500 by way of fines. The employees or boat owners have been ordered to stop loading and hold up prospective loading. The boat owners are petitioning the local Government, British Indian Steam Navigation Co., and Port Commissioners for an enquiry into their grievances. They further allege that the fault is as much on the shippers who order cargo to be sent in excess of capacity of a particular steamer, thereby causing obstruction. This evening [July 24] the matter was temporarily settled. Satisfactory arrangements regarding towing of cargo boats were made so far as three vessels directly concerned.