HC issues notice to striking unions, asks state to list measures to resolve problem
MUMBAI: The Bombay high court on Friday asked the state government as to what measures it was taking to address the issues raised by its employees, who have gone on an indefinite strike since March 14 seeking restoration of the old pension scheme scrapped in 2005
MUMBAI: The Bombay high court on Friday asked the state government as to what measures it was taking to address the issues raised by its employees, who have gone on an indefinite strike since March 14 seeking restoration of the old pension scheme scrapped in 2005.
The court asked the query while issuing notices to all the unions representing the striking employees and posted hearing of the interim application filed by a Mumbai-based lawyer who sought directions to the employees to withdraw the strike to March 23.
The division bench of acting chief justice SV Gangapurwala and justice SV Marne while hearing the interim application in a 2014 suit filed by advocate Gunaratan Sadavarte seeking directions for immediate withdrawal of the ongoing strike, in which teaching and medical staff were also participating, was informed by advocate general (AG) Birendra Saraf that the state government termed the strike illegal and was taking steps to get it withdrawn.
“The Court may record my statement on behalf of the State —that this strike is illegal. The employees do not have a moral or fundamental right to go on a strike. There are several judgments of the Supreme Court since 1954,” argued Saraf.
On the query of the bench to place on record what steps they were taking to ensure that the citizens were not disadvantaged, Saraf submitted that as the MESMA had expired in February and the renewed Act was yet to be sent for the Presidents assent, it could not be enforced.
However, he assured the court that all essential services would continue.
Thereafter the bench issued notice to all respondent authorities and employee unions that had called for the strike and posted hearing to March 23, 2023.
The petition had raised the issue of problems that ailing citizens and students would face as employees of government run hospitals and educational institutions and bodies had struck work. Sadavarte said that the strike would lead to delay in surgeries as well as disrupt the board, college and university exams of students.