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Bihar staff dues paid

Ranchi, Feb. 22: A group of former employees of Bihar State Industrial Development Corporation (BSIDC) today received a portion of their arrears pending for over a decade, rekindling hopes for around a thousand others fighting a long-drawn battle for their dues.

As many as 42 former staff members of erstwhile Swarnarekha Watch Factory were given their salaries for 1998-99 at Nyaya Sadan, the headquarters of Jharkhand Legal Services Authority (Jhalsa), following a Jharkhand High Court order issued last month.

The rest of the 990 beneficiaries, who worked for five units affiliated to the corporation, are to get their dues shortly.

This morning, former employees of the watch factory, which used to function out of Namkum, reached Nyaya Sadan with their documents and identity proofs to claim their money. After proper verification, the payments were made, said Jhalsa member secretary S.K. Dubey.

The high court, he added, asked Jhalsa to supervise disbursement of arrears among former employees of the other units as well.

“The process has begun today and will continue until all BSIDC employees get their dues,” Dubey said.

Former employees of Bihar State Super Phosphate Sindri, High Tension Insulator Factory, Malleable Cast Factory and Electrical Equipment Factory, apart from Swarnarekha Watch Factory, have been fighting for their dues for over a decade now.

Bihar State Industries Development Corporation Karamchari Mahasangh had also filed a plea in the high court, claiming their members had not been paid salaries and other benefits since 1983.

The five units winded up businesses around 2000, without clearing the dues. The mahasangh sought the high court’s help to bail out its members.

Chief Justice R. Banumathi and Justice S. Chandrashekhar on January 28 directed BSIDC to clear the dues.

Abiding by the order, BSIDC deposited Rs 7.5 crore to Jhalsa to clear arrears for the period of 1998-99.