PHE daily wagers take out protest rally, strike enters 5th day

PHE daily rated and CP workers staging protest demonstration near Press Club in Jammu on Monday. -Excelsior/ Rakesh
PHE daily rated and CP workers staging protest demonstration near Press Club in Jammu on Monday. -Excelsior/ Rakesh

Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU, Sept 19:  At least 27  protesting daily rated, ITI trained and CP workers of  the PHE Department who are on strike for the last five days were detained while two others sustained minor injuries  during brief  scuffle with police  near Dogra Chowk  here today.
On the 5th day of their continuous strike, the PHE workers after holding brief  protest demonstration  in the office  premises of  Chief Engineer, PHE Jammu at B C Road took out a protest march on the city roads.  They were shouting slogans in support of their demands. As they reached near Dogra Chowk, they tried to block road. The police intervened and foiled their attempt.
As they were returning to the original venue, they had clash with police as the cops did not allow them to re-enter  the BC Road PHE complex. The cops removed their tents and raised concertina wire there.  The police then detained at least 27 workers including union president Tanveer Hussain and shifted them to DPL. They were later released in the evening. During scuffle, two workers Nissar Ahmed and Subash Kumar were injured. Later,  they were hospitalized. The workers have now decided to shift their venue to Press Club from tomorrow.
Meanwhile,  the  water supply position in many rural and as well as urban and sub-urban areas has turned grim as the PHE daily wagers’ and  CP workers’  strike  today entered fifth consecutive day.
Reports from  many sub-divisions of  Jammu, Rajouri,  Udhampur,  Kathua, Reasi, Samba  and other parts revealed that with the strike of PHE daily wagers/ community participation and ITI workers, the general public is facing lot of hardships. Most of the water pumping stations and tube wells are being operated by the temporary staff.  The State authorities have failed to resolve the issue and take cognizance of the matter.
The indefinite strike launched by PHE daily wagers, ITI trained  and community participation  workers  has badly affected the water supply in many areas of Jammu city as well. Though, PHE authorities claimed that permanent staff has been given additional responsibility but they are unable to  ensure 100 % operation in the city.
The workers, under the banner of  All J&K PHE Daily Wagers, ITI Trained  & CP Workers Association today again assembled at B C Road complex and started protest demonstration followed protest march towards Jewel Chowk and Dogra crossing.   Tanveer Hussain, president  and Deepak Gupta vice president of the Association were  leading the protest.
Tanveer Hussain said that more than 23,000 PHE daily wagers are on strike.  These people have been made to suffer by the Government as it never remained serious in  resolving workers’ issues.  He alleged that process of  biometrics  as claimed by the Minister to be completed in three months has been abandoned. No separate Wage Head for the PHE daily wagers/ ITI trained and CP workers was created.  Their pending wages of nearly 38 months have not been released till today.  The Government is continuously befooling them, he added.


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