KOHLAPUR (TIP): The state government employees have threatened to go on indefinite strike in February for their pending demands. The Rajya Sarkari Madhyavarti Karmachari Sanghatana (RSMKS), the state government employees’ association, made the announcement on January 9. The date of the strike will be decided at a meeting of the employees at Nashik in the third week of January. Anil Lavekar, secretary of the RSMKS, said, “There are around 20 lakh government, semi-government employees and teachers working at government-run schools. We have presented our demands to the state government several times since 2011.
Whenever we agitate, the government assures us that they will look into the matter but has never taken any decision regarding our demands.” “Our demands are simple and the state government should not hesitate to accept them. This time, we will continue the strike till the government yields to our demands. This will be a state-wide strike, which will affect the functioning of the state when the machinery will be busy in preparing for Lok Sabha elections,” he said. The demands of the employees include, five-day week, increase the retirement age to 60 years, implementation of the Travelling Allowance and Educational allowance as applied to employees of central government and increase in the pension of the retired employees when they cross 80 years of age.
“The state government recruits persons to fill up 50% of the total posts of naib tehsildar (NT) by direct recruitment through Maharashtra Public Service Commission (MPSC) exams and the remaining 50% through promotions. The union has demanded a rise in filling of posts of NT through promotions instead of recruitment through MPSC exams,” said Lavekar. “From the last three years, we are agitating in a democratic way by presenting our demands to state government.
But we have received only assurance from them. Now, keeping in mind the upcoming Lok Sabah elections, we will go on an indefinite strike till our demands are accepted by the government. We have organised a meeting of the members of organisation in Nashik on the third week of January, where we will announce the date of our agitation,” he said. The other demands of the employees include hike in salaries, recruitment of persons for vacant posts, adequate stipend to employees doing overtime and regularization of work of contract as well as casual labourers.