Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Maharashtra employees observing strike today

State-run hospitals, primary healthcare centres, and dairies will be the most affected services today
 To express their ire over the state government's failure to implement the benefits of the Sixth Pay Commission, over 20 lakh government employees across the state are going on a day's strike. The strike is bound to cripple state-run hospitals, primary healthcare centers, and dairies. Besides government drivers, gardeners, canteen staff, including those working at Mantralaya will remain off-duty.

Last week, the employees' union held meetings with the Deputy Chief Minister and Finance Minister, Mr Ajit Pawar, but could not reach an amicable settlement.


Rival unions, however, are not supporting the strike. About 10 lakh employees affiliated to the Maharashtra State Government Employees Central Confederation would not participate in the strike.
The general secretary of the Confederation, Mr Subhash Gangurde, toldBusiness Line that it was not the right time to strike, as the State government on October 1 had agreed ‘in principle' to increase dearness allowance and to fill up the 14,000 vacant positions, he said.
Unions' demands
The unions have made a charter of 33 demands from the government, some of them include clearance of DA for the last 35 months; 40% vacancies in class III and IV to be filled at earliest; increasing the retirement age of class III and IV workers from 58 to 60.
The strike will be led by Mr R.G. Karnik, general secretary of Employees Central Organisation of Maharashtra Government.
Karnik said that the agitating employees are also upset with the fact that ever since Chief Minister Prithviraj Chavan took charge (last year) he has not met their representatives even once. "The union wanted to present its case before the CM, as it would have helped in generating additional revenue to the state exchequer without increasing the taxes, but we are still awaiting their response," added Karnik.

Meanwhile about 70,000 class I and II gazetted officers would be working today, as the State Gazetted Officers Association has decided to distance itself from the strike.
Source : MidDay and Business Line

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