Employees threaten fresh agitation
MUDDASIR ALI/SYED AMJAD SHAH
Srinagar/ Jammu Apr 26: Employees are preparing to restart the agitation if government fails to hold negotiations with them. A daylong meeting of the Joint Consultative Committee (JCC), an amalgam of the employees associations from Kashmir, Jammu and Ladakh, Monday decided that it would resume the agitation from May 3 in all the three regions of the state if government fails to respond to employees’ demands.
The JCC leaders would observe a sit-in in at Press Colony here, Press club Jammu and outside the offices of District Development Commissioners in Ladakh and Kargil on May 3. “We have decided to re-start our struggle. The May 3 program will be followed by observing a black day across the state on May 10 when the secretariat will re-open in the summer capital. We will hoist black flags in all government offices across the state and the employees will wear black badges on arms. The JCC leaders will observe a sit in outside the secretariat on the same day,” the senior JCC member, Khursheed Alam told Greater Kashmir after the meeting ended.
Asked if the JCC would resume the strike—declared unjust by the state High Court earlier this month—Alam said, “It is not only the strike, the employees are exploring every option to respond to the government which is maintaining criminal silence despite assurance to work out our demands.”
The State High Court had earlier this month termed the employees’ strike unjust and asked the state government to take stern action against the striking employees.
However, another JCC member said the committee was exploring legal option to challenge the Court directions and was in touch with the experts at the Supreme Court and the High Court.
The JCC feels that government has “ditched” its employees after it had deferred its strike on April 13 following assurance by the Chief Minister, Omar Abdullah, that the representatives of the employees would be invited for talks.
“There has been no response from the government. If it (government) feels that it has won the battle against the employees, they are mistaken. We will not give up till our demands are met with,” Alam added.
Meanwhile, leaders of the Employees Joint Action Committee (EJAC) met in Jammu today to discuss the silence maintained by the government despite the assurances by the chief minister. “The EJAC leaders decided to wait and watch till the cabinet meets,” sources said.
“We are expecting positive outcome of the two meetings of cabinet sub committee and council of ministers, schedule in next couple of days”, the EJAC leader Gafoor Ahmed Dar told Greater Kashmir.
Employees, he said, have only suspended the agitation and ball is in the government’s court.
Pertinently, employees have been demanding release of their pending arrears, enhancement of retirement age from 58 to 60, conversion of COLA into DA and release of HRA.
Lastupdate on : Mon, 26 Apr 2010 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Mon, 26 Apr 2010 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Tue, 27 Apr 2010 00:00:00 IST
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