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West Bengal govt denies leave to employees during 48-hour central trade union strike

Those who do not attend office on these days will forego their salary for the day and the absence will also result in a break in service

Our Special Correspondent | Published 28.03.22, 07:00 AM
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Representational image

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The Mamata Banerjee government has cancelled all kinds of leaves for its employees on Monday and Tuesday after a 48-hour nationwide strike was called by the joint forum of central trade unions to protest the Union government’s policies affecting workers, farmers and the people.

“We are opposed to so many policies of the central government. But we follow a policy of not allowing disruptive strikes... So, we will initiate steps to keep life normal on the bandh days,” said a minister.

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According to the notification issued by the state finance department, all government offices and offices of the state-aided institutes, including schools, civic bodies and rural bodies, will remain open on the bandh days and attendance of all the employees has been made mandatory.

“It has been decided that no casual leave or any other leave for absence either in the first half or in the second half or for the whole day shall be granted to any employee on the above-mentioned dates,” reads the order.

The order mentions that any employee can be granted a leave only in case of hospitalisation of the employee, bereavement in the family, employees who are on childcare leave or maternity leave sanctioned prior to March 25.

Those who do not attend office on these days will forego their salary for the day and the absence will also result in a break in service.

The Trinamul-led state government had initiated steps against the strike culture of Bengal since it came to power in 2011.

“Initially, the state government had to take steps against thousands of employees. But within a couple of years, almost 100 per cent attendance was being reported in government offices. So, we issue the notice cancelling leaves as a routine measure even though we know that government offices will function normally on the strike days,” said another minister, adding the government was initiating all required steps to keep transport normal on strike days.

Some Opposition leaders criticised Trinamul, citing the ruling party in Bengal is hurting the fight against the BJP by opposing the strike.

“Every time the Opposition has united to fight the BJP, Trinamul has backstabbed. The polls in Goa and Tripura  (to hurt the Congress and the Left) are glaring examples. The notice to cancel all leaves on the strike days is also another example,” said Samik Lahiri, a CPM leader.

Last updated on 28.03.22, 07:00 AM
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