Bhopal (Madhya Pradesh): Even the imposition of ESMA did not deter the power companies employees from proceeding with their indefinite strike on Friday. Routine working like meter reading, electricity bill distribution, complaint redressal, power line fault repair was affected as the employees did not turn up for their duty on the first day of their strike.
The government on Thursday evening had imposed the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) cautioning the employees of the all the six companies under the energy department against going on strike.
The protesting employees staged demonstration at Govindpura power house seeking fulfillment of 8-point demands including restoration of Old Pension Scheme (OPS), regularisation of outsource employees, 4% Dearness Relief (DR) and others.
Pressing for their demands, the employees had observed fast and performed bhajan-kirtan in front of the Gandhi statue in Govindpura on October 2. Thereafter, a meeting of union officials was also held with the managing director of the Power Management Company, but three rounds of talks ended inconclusively. The union then gave a call for indefinite strike.
United Forum for Power Employees and Engineers president VKS Parihar said, “Even after the imposition of ESMA, we went on indefinite strike. The government should consider our demands. Due to the indefinite strike, complaints are piling up in the offices as it is handled by outsource staff.”
The key organizations of the power company, United Forum for Power Employees and Engineers, Madhya Pradesh Vidyut Mandal Engineers Association, Power Engineers and Employees Association have decided to fight jointly to protect the interests of regular, contractual, outsourced staffers and pensioners, said Parihar.
ESMA has been imposed on the employees of the all the six companies under the energy department including MP Power Management Company Limited, Jabalpur; MP East Zone Electricity Distribution Company Limited Jabalpur; MP West Zone Electricity Distribution Company Limited Indore; MP Central Zone Electricity Distribution Company Limited Bhopal; MP Power Transmission Company Limited Jabalpur and Madhya Pradesh Power Generating Company Limited.