Staff Reporter

Threaten to launch mass strike to press for their demand

  • 20 state governments have raised the retirement age
  • Lifting of ban on recruitments sought

    BHUBANESWAR: Thousands of State Government employees under the banner of Orissa Karmachari Sangram Samiti (OKSS), who gathered at a convention here on Tuesday, demanded raising the retirement age to 60 years.

    "If the State Government fails to decide on our demands including extension of retirement age to 60 years by March 31, the employees will resort to mass strike which could paralyse the administration," OKSS Secretary General Nalini Pati said.

    He said about 20 State governments, including Union government had extended the retirement age to 60. "Though Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik had promised to implement 60-year-retiremet programme in the 2000, the matter has been delayed on several occasions. Thousands of government employees are suffering as they retire at the age of 58," Mr. Pati said.

    The OKSS also took exception to the government's decision to merge 50 per cent dearness allowance with the basic pay from April 2006.

    "This is a clear case of betrayal to the faith of employees. Though the State Government time and again declared to consider our demand of 50 per cent merger of dearness allowance from April 2004, it jumped two years," he said.

    NREGP funds

    The employees also came down heavily on non-utilisation of central funds under the NREGP. "The State Government should stop appointing on consolidation basis. All new recruits should be made permanent," the OKSS leader said. The massive convention of employees decided to seek coordination with other federations to put pressure on the State Government.