Haryana powermen on strike, government claims supply normal
Chandigarh, June 29: Power sector workers in Haryana went on a two-day strike on Wednesday opposing a move by the government to privatise some services of power utilities.
Haryana Chief Secretary D.S. Dhesi told the media here that power supply in the state was normal and there was no information of disruption of power supply.
Dhesi claimed that only 36 per cent of the power utilities workmen were absent from work on Wednesday.
Additional Chief Secretary (Power) Rajan Gupta said the work given to private companies had limited scope and there would be no effect on the jobs of the power sector workers in Haryana.
Various unions of powermen had on Monday refused to withdraw their two-day strike call despite Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar’s appeal.
Khattar had set up a three-member committee under the chairmanship of Transport Minister Krishan Lal Panwar to negotiate with representatives of the agitating employees.
The unions of workers of Haryana Power Utilities decided to go on strike on June 29-30 to press for an immediate end to “outsourcing” of jobs in the power utilities.
The Haryana government invoked the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA) in the state for six months in view of the strike call.
The government directed all Deputy Commissioners and the Director General of Police (DGP) to make necessary arrangements to ensure uninterrupted power supply during the strike.
The step was taken to ensure that miscreants were not allowed to stop workers from performing their duties, a government spokesman said.
The government prohibited the strike in the Haryana Vidyut Prasaran Nigam Ltd, Haryana Power Generation Corp Ltd, Uttar Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam Ltd and Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam Ltd by any employee for six months with immediate effect.
The strike call has been given at a time when sowing of paddy crop is in full swing and power supply to agricultural fields has to be ensured.