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Stir called off, threat looms

Ranchi, Feb. 10: Power unions today called off their proposed indefinite strike from tomorrow, but warned of a fresh stir call if their concerns were not addressed at the earliest.

“We are not satisfied with the minutes of the meeting he held with the energy minister today. We will meet tomorrow to chalk out our future course of action. If need be, we will serve a fresh strike notice,” Prashant Chaturvedi, the convener of Coordination Committee of Power Unions, told The Telegraph.

The coordination committee comprises Power Engineers Service Association, Jharkhand State Electric Supply Workers’ Union, Jharkhand Power Workers’ Union, Jharkhand Vidyut Karmachari Sangh, Technical Officers’ Association and Jharkhand United Workers’ Union.

This morning, Chaturvedi called off their indefinite strike following “satisfactory” talks with state energy minister Rajendra Prasad Singh and other officials.

According to power union sources, the minister promised to ensure that power employees received their salaries within the 10th of every month. In case of any delay, employees would be paid their salaries with interests.

However, the minister rejected the unions’ main demand to treat power employees as government staff.

Sing said no rollback was possible on the unbundling of Jharkhand State Electricity Board (JSEB) that had been notified by the state government on January 6 this year.

But, sources said, the government agreed to set up a trust with a corpus of Rs 2,000 crore to ensure speedy clearance of retirement benefits of all employees.

But when the minutes of the meeting was handed over to them this afternoon, the unions alleged that the minutes were different from what was agreed upon by the minister at the meeting. “We will discuss the turn of events with our constituents tomorrow,” Chaturvedi said.

S.N. Verma, chairman, Jharkhand Vidyut Vikas Nigam Limited, said all efforts were being made to ensure a peaceful solution.


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