PHE workers strike affects water supply in Jammu

  • HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times, Jammu
  • Updated: Sep 01, 2014 19:14 IST

In the wake of 48 hours strike by the public health engineering (PHE) workers, the water supply in Jammu and other districts was affected on Monday.

The PHE workers are on 48 hours strike, starting from 8 pm on Sunday. The public will be forced to remain without water on Tuesday as well, as the staff looking after the emergency services is also on the strike.

Around 16,703 daily wagers working in the PHE department are demanding regularisation of their services and release of their long-pending dues. The strike is being held under the banner of PHE workers welfare association.

Expressing concern with public, the president of the association, Subash Verma said, "The government has forced us on the agitation path, we do not want public to suffer because of us. The regularisation of daily wagers is genuine and just demand. Some of the workers are working in the PHE department for as long as 18 years. We want the government to make a proper employment policy."

On Tuesday, the office bearers of the association will meet at 10 am in the office of the chief engineer to decide the future course of action.

Whether the association had any meeting with the government on the issue, Verma said, "We have meeting on Sunday with PHE minister Sham Lal Sharma, but the meet remained inconclusive".

On the question of whether the PHE minister or the chief minister creating a hurdle in the mitigation of their demands, Verma said, "In our view, it is the finance minister, Abdul Rahim Rather, who is not letting the regularisation proposal go through."

Speaking on the measures the department has taken to ensure proper water supply, PHE chief engineer, Jammu, Sushil Aima said, "The water supply has been affected in many areas of the region, where the daily wagers are engaged. However, in the other areas where regular staff is engaged, there has been no such problem."

Justifying on the demands of the protesting workers, the PHE chief engineer said, "Yes their demands are justified, we have even given representation to the government many a time and have asked it to release their wages."

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