Contract power staff on strike to seek service regularisation

Power utilities wilfully delaying court case, allege workers

As part of their strike from July 21, a section of contract employees working for the four power utilities in the State staged a protest at Vidhyuth Soudha, the headquarters of TS-Genco and TS-Transco, here on Tuesday demanding regularisation of their service and other facilities.

Under the aegis of Telangana Vidyuth Karmika Sanghala Joint Action Committee-Telangana Vidyut Contract Employees Union, a large number of contract employees gathered at the power utilities' office to press for their demands which also include provision of EPF, ESI and minimum wages to piece-rate workers, payment of salary to artisans on par with regular employees and provision of employment on compassionate grounds to the kin of contract staff died in-service.

Following the State Government decision to absorb about 23,600 contract and outsourced employees in May last year, a stay issued by the High Court on their absorption put the exercise on hold. Instead, the utilities then decided to pay salaries to the workers directly without the involvement of third parties – contract or outsourcing agencies.

The managements of the four power utilities asked the contract employees not to go on strike with an assurance that they were ready to follow court directions on the regularisation of their service as and when the case was disposed. They also told the employees that any step forward by the utilities on the issue would amount to contempt of court.

On the other hand, utilities have also warned the section of striking employees about initiating disciplinary action besides following no-work, no-pay policy. The agitating workers, however, have alleged power utilities were wilfully delaying the court case.

Meanwhile, Khammam operation circle of Northern Power Distribution Company of Telangana Ltd (TSNPDCL) has initiated the process to terminate the contract and outsourced striking workers on Monday.

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Printable version | Apr 10, 2020 9:11:09 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/cities/Hyderabad/contract-power-staff-on-strike-to-seek-service-regularisation/article24506586.ece

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