Report by KEC correspondent
On 12th October, members of Maharashtra State Electricity Workers Federation further intensified the agitation by organizing massive protests all across Maharashtra and forced the Mahavitaran management to immediately accede to some of their long pending demands.
AIFAP earlier reported on this website that Maharashtra electricity workers have started an agitation in support of their 16 long pending demands. On 12th October, members of Maharashtra State Electricity Workers Federation further intensified the agitation by organizing massive protests all across Maharashtra.
Thousands of workers organized a Dharna agitation in front of offices of Maharashtra Electricity Generation, Transmission and Distribution companies. The day long Dharna was organized in all the major cities and towns including Mumbai, Pune, Nagpur, Aurangabad, Nashik, Kolhapur, Jalgaon, Akola, Amravati, Karad, Gondia, Baramati, Chandrapur, Gadchiroli, Latur etc.
More than 30 state committee leaders led by Com. Mohan Sharma, Com. Krushna Bhoyar, Com. C. N. Deshmukh, Com. Mahesh Jotrao participated in the Dharna outside Mahavitaran Head Quarters situated at Prakashgad in Mumbai.
The management of Mahavitaran tried its best to foil the agitation by calling employees in various regions for emergency meetings, assigning additional duties etc. However, the agitation was so successful that in a meeting held later in the day, the Mahavitaran management was forced to accept certain demands immediately. Demands immediately acceded to include:
– Starting recruitment to fill in 5000 vacant positions out of more than 31000 vacant positions;
– Assurance that no policy changes will be done without prior discussion with the union, like recruitment rules, transfer rules, etc.;
– Increasing petrol allowance for engineers and other workers;
– To start recruitment of family members of deceased employees wherever possible;
– Stop terrorising and threatening workers for collection of overdue payments;
– Urgently release the pending leave encashment and increment related payments to works.
The management also promised a meeting for further discussions on the earliest possible date to discuss other extremely important issues raised by unions like stopping the giving of various important activities to contractors, regularising contract workers who have been working for many years in the company etc.
These demands are extremely important not only from the perspective of workers but also from the perspective of electricity consumers since these demands will put a spoke in the wheel of further privatisation of electricity.
This once again shows that since electricity workers perform a very important role in the economy, their demands cannot be ignored easily by the ruling class.