Simmering discontent among Uttar Pradesh state employees

Simmering discontent among state employees, who are bracing up for a direct confrontation with the Govt., decided to launch a statewide strike, threatens to cripple health care, transport and education from 21st January.

"There is no going back from our stand and we are determined to resort to a direct action, if our demands for parity in all respects with those of our counterparts in the Central government are not conceded at the earliest," said VP Mishra, president of the Employees-Teachers’ Joint Front, UP.

"We are disappointed by the state of affairs and our main grouse is against chief minister Mayawati, who has refused to meet even the delegation of this front, which is an apex body of the employees," Mishra rued. We were left with no option but to take a direct action now and we would not give up, even if there were repressive measures against the employees, he said.

Strongly opposed to the ban imposed on the `dharna sthal’ in front of the Vidhan Sabha, Mishra said that the Front would also hold its demonstration in violation of this on January 21. Incidentally, the Front’s strike plan also coincides with that of the budget session of the state assembly. Prior to this, Mishra said, the Front would hold demonstrations throughout the state in front of collectorates of districts concerned on January 12 to press for its demands.

The Front’s demands include implementation of the Sixth Pay-commission’s report in letter and spirit, time scale at 8, 16 and 24 years of services instead of that 10, 20 and 30 years of services, announcement of dearness allowance, which is due from November, regularisation of work-charge employees against the direct vacancies, and education and conveyance allowances, as given to those of the Central employees under the Sixth Pay Commission report.

Lamenting the government’s attitude towards the employees, he said such a situation had developed in the state for the first time after 1986 when the state employees had launched one of the longest strikes on similar issues.

Nearly 18 lakh of total 22 lakh state employees are part of this organisation, which has been formulated by merging together over 18 different unions of the state employees. They include around 16 lakh state employees, over 2 lakh civic employees and teachers. However, teachers led by Om Prakash Sharma are not part of this front.

The strike, as proposed, is likely to have a widespread impact on the state. This is because the Front represents employees responsible for maintaining essential services like UPSRTC buses, hospitals, civic affairs, development authorities, water supply system, drainage and sanitation, besides a large number of schools and colleges.

The government treasury work, according to Mishra, will also be suspended indefinitely.

Accusing the government of inaction on justified demands of the employees, Mishra said, the issue had been left by the CM on her babus instead of addressing it herself. The Rizvi Committee’s report on parity in pay-scales had also not been conceded. The result was that there were large number of anomalies in the implementation of Sixth Pay Commission’s report due to which the state employees were on the receiving end.

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