Hundreds of casual daily wagers working in various government departments, on Tuesday staged a valley wide protest demanding regularizing of their services, payment of their pending wages and implementation of Minimum Wages Act in Jammu and Kashmir.
Hundreds of casuals under the banner of ‘Jammu and Kashmir Daily Wagers Forum’ on Tuesday assembled at their departmental headquarters, with banners in their hands and raised slogans to press their demands of their regularization and implementation of Minimum Wages Act in Jammu and Kashmir.
In one such protest held at the headquarters of Jal Shakti Board, (PHE Department), Kothi Bagh, Casual worker’s leader Sajjad Parray, while addressing the protestors said that they have been working in different government departments as casual workers, since last twenty five years against meager wages, which too are being kept withheld for months.
He said, “Never has the administration bothered to look into the miseries of sixty one thousand casuals and their families are exposed to”, adding that at times our five lac family members were forced to starve.
“We have been running from pillar to post to press our demand of regularizing our services, but every time we were fed with promises that were never fulfilled”, he said.
Even the promise of the Prime Minister Narendar Modi has yet to see the light of the day, in which he promised regularization of all the casuals and implementation of Minimum Wages Act in here, after the special status of Jammu and Kashmir was revoked.
Sajjad Parray further said that when there are already thousands of daily wagers waiting for their regularization, what is the fun of announcing fresh recruitments.
“This is not only a mere injustice, but a crude Joke with us, who have given their best years in the service of the people”, he added.
A protestor said, “Imagine our plight. We are people who have been working for the betterment of department day and night. The reward for our honesty and sincere hard work is that at many occasions, we are forced to hit streets to demand even release of our earned wages,” they said.
“We are facing immense hardships as we have no other source to feed our families. With the meager wages paid to us we are even unable to deposit school fee of our wards,” said another protesting daily wager.
The protestors warned that if their demands are not met immediately, they along with their families will be forced to come on roads. CNS