The police on Saturday foiled a protest march of the state government employees toward the assembly complex in Srinagar by detaining nearly 300 employee leaders and dispersing others by using force.
As per the protest calendar, the employees in the morning gathered at Sher-i-Kashmir Park to take out protest march towards civil secretariat for "assembly gherao".
They were stopped by police and paramilitary personnel who were present in large numbers. The security personnel arrested several employee leaders and detained at least 300 others and took them to nearby police stations, initially. Police arrested protesting employees from other parts of Srinagar as well.
Meanwhile, work in government offices remained paralysed as employees stayed away from offices. Those giving emergency services in hospitals and examinations were exempted from the strike.
The Joint Consultative Committee (JCC), an amalgam of several employee unions, had called for a five-day strike and protest programme to press for the implementation of the agreement signed between their leaders and the government.
"Around 300 employees were arrested by police during our protest programme," said Abdul Rauf Bhat, a senior JCC leader.
Police raided the house of senior JCC leader Abdul Qayoom Wani and lodged him in police station, Kothi Bagh. He was later shifted to Central Jail, Srinagar.
Hussain said the future course of action will be decided in a meeting of the JCC leaders on Sunday.
There was hardly any impact of the JCC-led five-day strike programme in the government offices, PSUs and the government schools in the Jammu region. Reports from other districts and tehsils of the region indicated that there was hardly any impact of the strike.
Jammu divisional commissioner Shant Manu said, "Out of 18 employees of the Regional Transport Office (RTO), Jammu, who were booked under the Essential Services (Maintenance) Ordinance, 2001, (ESMO) on Friday, 16 were arrested by on Saturday. Two employees were not arrested due to medical complications and personal problems. In the morning, police arrested senior JCC leader Gafoor Dar from his residence at lodged him in jail. He too has been booked under ESMO."
"There was no impact of the strike in the Jammu division as there was almost full attendance in government offices and the work was conducted smoothly," he added.
Jammu additional deputy commissioner Sushma Chauhan said, "There was almost full attendance in government offices throughout Jammu district. One person was arrested and atmosphere remained peaceful."
Employees are demanding enhancement of retirement age from 58 to 60, regularisation policy for all daily-rated workers, casual labourers engaged after 1994, removal of pay anomalies of clerical cadre and budgetary support to all public sector units and corporations to release their salaries and other pending arrears.