Employees stay away from work even after the strike ends

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NASHIK: The state government employees, who had gone on a three-day strike over various demands including salary hike, withdrew the stir on Thursday after receiving positive assurances from the state administration. However, despite withdrawal of the strike, government offices in the district including the collectorate wore a deserted look on its third and final day of the stir.

Around 17 lakh Class-3 and Class-4 employees of the state government including over 45,000 government, semi-government, teaching and non-teaching employees across the district were on strike since Tuesday over their various demands, including implementation of recommendations of the Seventh Pay Commission and filling up of vacant posts.

Representatives of over 22 employees’ unions held an impromptu meeting at Alpabachat Bhavan in the district collectorate here on Thursday afternoon to declare withdrawal of the stir after the union members received official message from Mumbai about positive assurances from the state government.

Following this, partial work was started at few offices however by and large majority of the employees preferred to stay away from work. As many as 3000 employees of the revenue department, 18,000 work force of ZP, 1400 workers of irrigation, 1500 (forests) and close to 21100 employees from different government, semi-govt departments had joined the 3-day strike.

“We held discussions with the chief minister and the finance minister in the past and with the chief secretary today. The government has agreed to most of our demands,” Milind Sardeshmukh, president of the organisation which called for the protest, said, further adding that employees would again resort to severe strike in October if their demands were not met as assured.

Sardeshmukh claimed that 1.85 lakh posts of Class-3 and Class-4 employees were lying vacant in Maharashtra and that the vacant posts in various departments increased the workload on employees. Around 30-40 per cent of total posts are lying vacant in hospitals and other essential services departments, he claimed.

Besides, the employees unions have also been demanding implementation of a five-day week working system, raising the retirement age from 58 years to 60 years, filling up various posts on compassionate grounds, continuation of the old pension scheme and two-year child care leave to women employees.

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