KARNATAKA

Two daily wage employees attempt suicide near Janata Dal (S) office

Seeking justice: Kenche Gowda (foreground) and Chandra who attempted to end their lives near the Janata Dal (S) office in Bangalore on Wednesday undergoing treatment at the Bowring Hospital.

Seeking justice: Kenche Gowda (foreground) and Chandra who attempted to end their lives near the Janata Dal (S) office in Bangalore on Wednesday undergoing treatment at the Bowring Hospital.  

Staff Reporter

They were seeking regularisation of services

BANGALORE: Demanding regularisation of service, two daily wage employees of the State Government attempted suicide in front of the Janata Dal (Secular) office here on Wednesday even as the Public Works and Energy Minister H.D. Revanna and Y.S.V. Datta, MLC, were engaged in heated exchanges with a group of protesting employees.

The police said that around 3 p.m. Kenche Gowda (42) and Chandru (56) of Shimoga district consumed insecticide in front of the Janata Dal (Secular) office on Racecourse Road. The two were rushed to a nearby private hospital and later admitted in Bowring and Lady Curzon Hospital. The condition of Mr. Kenche Gowda is said to be critical, while Mr. Chandru is out of danger, the police added.

The daily wage employees are on an indefinite hunger strike at Jakkarayanakere for the past three days. Chief Minister H.D. Kumaraswamy, who visited the JD (S) office on Wednesday to attend a party meeting, had reportedly assured the protesting employees that he would meet their leaders at the party office. But, Mr. Kumaraswamy left without meeting them.

When Mr. Revanna and Mr. Datta came to meet the employees, they turned their ire against them. After heated arguments, Mr. Revanna promised the employees that the Government would look into their demands.

Even as Mr. Revanna was talking to the employees, two of them consumed insecticide.

The High Grounds police have registered a case.

Another daily wage employee, Basavaraj Kattimani, had attempted suicide by consuming poison at Jakkarayanakere two days ago.

Speaking to The Hindu, A.M. Nagaraj, president of Shimoga unit of Karnataka State Daily Wage Employees’ Association, said that over 4,000 daily wage employees were staging a protest at Jakkarayanakere for the past three days.

“Both Mr. Kenche Gowda and Chandra are from Shimoga district. Kenche Gowda is a daily wage employee with the Public Works Department, while Mr. Chandra is with the Forest Department. Both have over 20 years’ service,” he claimed. Mr. Nagaraj said that the association’s only demand was that the services of all those who had completed 10 years be regularised.

“Of the 17,000 and odd daily wage employees in the State, the Government has regularised the services of around 4,500. There still are around 10,000 employees, who have put in more than 10 years. We urge the Government to regularise their services,” he said.



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