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HEC unions seek special aid

Ranchi, Aug. 20: Workers’ unions at Heavy Engineering Corporation (HEC) have sought a special package from the Centre to pull out the PSU from the red, their demand timed with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s visit to Ranchi tomorrow.

“We have already sent a memorandum to the PMO requesting that adequate funds be released to HEC to help it modernise three plants which are now more than six decades old. We have also demanded that additional funds to the tune of Rs 64 crore be released so that more than 4,500 workers, supervisors and officers can be paid their arrears due since January 1, 1988,” Bhawan Singh, general secretary of Hatia Mazdoor Union, told The Telegraph.

He said the union had also drawn the attention of the Prime Minister on the urgent need to induct young blood into the organisation and fill up existing vacancies.

“HEC is a victim of political games played by leaders of major political parties. A previous HEC chairman-cum- managing director has been placed under suspension after he demanded that political leaders occupying HEC residential quarters needed to pay rent,” Singh added.

Addressing a rally in front of the HEC corporate headquarters at Dhurwa, the Hatia Mazdoor Union general secretary pointed out that more than 4,500 workers, supervisors and officers had been put on an endless wait to get their arrears due since January 1998. “Many employees have meanwhile retired. Many have died and their next of kin are now waiting for HEC to pay them their rightful dues. On an average, HEC owes each employee Rs 3 lakh to Rs 5 lakh,” he alleged.