Employees call 4 day strike from July 9

Fayaz Bukhari
SRINAGAR, June 19: The State Government employees today called for 4 day strike to press for the implementation of the agreement which they had reached with the Government last year and threatened to close down educational institutions in the next phase.
While announcing 4 day protest programme, senior leader of the Employees Joint Coordination Committee (JCC) and president of Employees Joint Action Committee (EJAC-Q), Abdul Qayoom Wani, said that Government’s negative attitude is forcing employees to intensify their strike. Senior JCC leaders Khursheed Alam and Mohammad Gafoor Dar were also present at the press conference.
Wani announced that there will be complete employees strike from July 9 to July 12. However, educational institutions will function normally on July 9 and 10 and will remain closed on July 11 and 12. He said that on July 11, employees will hold protests at district headquarters across the State. “On July 12, around 50,000 Government employees will hold protest demonstration at City Centre Lal Chowk”, he added.
Wani said Government is backtracking from its agreement. “We are running the Government and if we want we will make it dysfunctional”, he added.
He said that the JCC has given 20 days time to Government to implement the agreement and warned that next programme will be the final programme.
Wani described the statement of Chief Minister Omar Abdullah on employee leaders giving strike calls for their personal interests as childish. He said that by tendering his resignation, Khursheed Alam has given befitting reply to the Chief Minister. He saluted Alam for resigning from his service to show the people that he is working for the betterment of employees and not for his personal interests.
While replying to a question about the confrontational attitude of the employee leaders, Wani said that employees were forced by the Government to come out on the streets to press for their demands.
He said that Government has not given anything to the employees on platter so far. “The 6th Pay Commission was implemented after Government employees strived for it. Arrears were released when employees forced the Government for it, otherwise they were saying that they have no money”, he added.
Wani said that if the Government used force against the employees and fails to implement the agreement, in the next phase educational institutions will also be closed down.
On a question about retirement age, he said that due to the enhancement of the retirement age to 60, only 7000 entry level posts will get affected while there are 1.5 lakh posts vacant in various Government departments. He said that if the Government is serious in dealing with the unemployment issue, they should immediately make fast track recruitments.
Meanwhile, Khursheed Alam tendered his resignation to the Deputy Director Consumer Affairs and Public Distribution Shafaqat Hussain. Alam was retiring as Assistant Director Mills CAPD on August 31. He announced his resignation yesterday in response to Chief Minister Omar Abdullah’s statement in which he had accused that some of the employees are issuing strike programmes for their personal interests.
The Government employees are demanding enhancement of the retirement age to 60 from the existing 58 years, regularization of daily-wagers engaged after 1994 and removal of pay anomalies in the clerical cadre, besides budgetary support for Public Sector Undertakings. For this, they had reached an agreement with the Government, which was to be implemented in March this year.