35,000 electricity workers marched to the Nagpur Legislative Assembly to demand that electricity companies not be privatized and for other demands

Report by Maharashtra Rajya Veej Kamgar, Abhiyante, Adhikari Sangharsh Samiti

At 11.00 am on 23.12.2022, thousands of electricity workers, officer engineers and contract workers took out a massive morcha against the state government’s policy of privatizing the three electricity companies. More than 35,000 electricity workers engineers, officers and contract workers participated in the march. The march taken out from Indora Chowk on behalf of the Maharashtra Rajya Veej Kamgar, Abhiyante, Adhikari Sangharsh Samiti (Maharashtra State Power Workers, Engineers, Officers Struggle Committee) was stopped by the police at LIC Chowk in Nagpur.

After the police stopped the march in LIC Chowk, office bearers of organizations participating in Sangharsh Committee, Mohan Sharma, Sanjay Thakur, Krushna Bhoyar, Shankar Pahade, RT Devkant, Syed Jarirohin, Damodar Changole, Rajan Bhanushali, Rajesh Kathale, Madhukar Surwade, HK Lokhande, Sanjay Khade, Navnath Pawar, Prabhakar Lahane, Dattatray Gunte, Uttam Parve, Lalit Shewale, Prakash Gaikwad, Smt. Sneha Mishra, Vitthal Bhalerao, Shivaji Vaiphalkar etc. in their speeches warned the government that if they try to privatize the electricity companies, electricity workers would go on indefinite strike for the benefit of the electricity consumers of Maharashtra.

MLA Prakash Thackeray of Nagpur, MLA Raju Patil of Parbhani addressed this morcha and supported the demand of electricity workers.

30 organizations working in power companies have formed a Sangharsh Committee and through it, they will not tolerate any kind of privatization in the three companies of generation, transmission and distribution. The morcha was organised for the following demands:

• These electric companies belonging to the people should stay with them; the electric companies should not be handed over to the private capitalists for profit.
• Opposition to the parallel electricity distribution license from the Electricity Regulatory Commission that Adani Electrical Limited, a private capital company, has sought for the Thane and Vashi Mandals of Bhandup Circle, which is the area of operation of the Mahavitaran Company
• The 40,000 vacant posts in the three electricity companies should be filled immediately.
• The contractual and outsourcing workers in the three companies should be immediately absorbed. Equal pay for equal work should be implemented.
• Stop the work done by contractors through empanelment
• Stop the practice of running the sub-centres created after 1.4.2019 on private basis, etc.

Discussion of the Morcha delegation with Hon’ble Minister Tanaji Sawant.
Hon’ble Tanaji Sawant, Minister of Health of the State, called the delegation of the Sangharsh Committee for the discussion. In the discussion, it was clarified on behalf of the trade unions that they would not tolerate any kind of privatization in the power industries. As this issue is in the interest of the people of the state, the delegation of the Sangharsh Committee urged that the Chief Minister and the Deputy Chief Minister should look into it and stop the privatization. To that the Minister said that the Hon’ble Chief Minister and the Hon’ble Deputy Chief Minister as well as the Energy Minister are not in Nagpur at present.

After he comes on Monday, I will put this issue before him and request him to arrange a meeting on this issue immediately at the level of the Energy Minister. The government was clearly told that unless the issue was discussed, the agitation announced by the Sangharsh Samiti would continue.

Yours truly
Maharashtra Rajya Veej Kamgar, Abhiyante, Adhikari Sangharsh Samiti

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