Removal of garbage within the corporation limits hit as contract drivers strike work

Removal of garbage within the Madurai Corporation limits has been affected after around 60 contract drivers went on strike for the third day on Friday demanding regularisation of their services.

Though the Corporation administration has been trying to make do with the absence of the striking employees by utilising their regular drivers, they could not prevent piling up of garbage in various parts of the city.

Corporation Deputy Commissioner, K. Sambhavi, said that it was not possible for the Corporation to regularise the services of labourers who were employed by the contractor. According to Corporation sources, the employees were also sore over underpayment by the contractors.

Ruling party zonal chairperson P. Salaimuthu, had raised the contractor labour system during the last council meeting. He said that the system had only helped the contractors make huge profit, while the working class were denied their rightful wages. He said that at least 50 per cent of the wages fixed by the Collector was taken away by the contractor.

Councillors had been seeking the Corporation to make payment to the contractor labourers directly through their bank account to prevent irregularities. However, Ms. Sambhavi said that it was not possible for the corporation to make direct payment to the workers employed by the contractors.

She added that besides asking the permanent drivers to ply dumper placers for additional trips for clearing the garbage, she said the contractors had been asked to provide with fresh hands to manage the situation.

She said that mass cleaning programme was scheduled for Saturday when the permanent employees would be deployed to clean the Mattuthavani Integrated Bus stand, Arapalayam bus stand to Guru Theatre, in and around Mariamman Teppakulam and Palanganatham bus stand.

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