PHE workers protest, seek action against corrupt officials

President, Water Works (PHE) Employees Association, Som Nath addressing workers' rally at PHE Complex, Udhampur on Tuesday.
President, Water Works (PHE) Employees Association, Som Nath addressing workers' rally at PHE Complex, Udhampur on Tuesday.

Excelsior Correspondent

UDHAMPUR, July 2: The PHE daily wagers and other lower rung employees held strong protest demonstration, seeking action against some corrupt officials of their department and early resolution of their pending demands.
The PHE workers in large number from various areas like, Ramnagar, Majalta, Chenani, Jib Thathi, Krimochi, Jaganoo, Pancheri, Roun Domail and Udhampur town, under the banner of Water Works (PHE) Employees Association Udhampur Unit, led by its president Som Nath, assembled at the PHE complex here today and started protest demonstration. They were raising slogans against Executive Engineer PHE Udhampur and Assistant Accounts Officer for increasing corruption in the department and inaction on their part. They alleged that for any small certificate/ or routine official works like withdrawal of GP, salary certificate, loan papers etc, rates have been fixed and officers at the helm of affairs are not taking any action. Rather, they are encouraging such activities. There is no accountability at all and no fear of any body. The lower rung employees/ workers are being crushed and harassed. The workers y also conducted the `gherao’ of officers and raised slogans against them. Later, Superintending Engineer PHE and Police officers intervened to resolve the issue.
Earlier, Som Nath, while addressing the large gathering warned to expose the officials involved in the corrupt practices and demanded that lower rung employees should not be harassed. He alleged that corruption level has gone high in the department and those sitting at the top must take cognizance. He urged upon the Chief Engineer PHE Jammu, Commissioner/ Secretary and Advisor concerned to take action in this regard. He also warned to stop water supply in the area if the no action was taken.
He also demanded to resolve the pending issues of the employees which include, release of pending wages of PHE daily wagers/ and all other type of temporary workers for the last 56 month, implementation of SRO 520, remove shortage of staff at various pumping and other water stations/ offices, conduct of DPC meet at Divisional and Provincial level without any delay, change of designation of workers as per their nature of work and enhance medical allowance of employees and pensioners from Rs 300 to Rs 3000 per month.
Prominent among others who addressed the gathering included- Vijay Kumar Sharma, Suraj Parkash, Dinesh Kesar, Makhan Chand, Baledev Raj, Krishan Chand, Jagdish Magotra, Balbir Singh, Govind Ram, Barkat Ali, Ganesh Chand and Vidya Ram.