Lakhs of employees in Rajasthan held militant demonstrations in front of 33 district headquarters on 25th July 2012 to protest against the policy of privatisation, liberalisation and globalisation and in support of their 11-point charter of demands, under the leadership of the All Rajasthan State Employees Coordination Committee. A petition was submitted to the Chief Minister. According to the news reports, the people were angry across all the districts of the state against the anti-employee policies of the Rajasthan government.
Itis to be noted that employees and their unions from all departments have come together under the All Rajasthan State Employees Coordination Committee to oppose the anti-worker economic policies of privatisation, liberalisation and globalisation. This is a constructive and praise-worthy step.
Under these policies, more and more work of the departments is being done on contract. There will hardly be a department where this has not happened. In the various departments, like education, horticulture, forestry, agriculture, labour, transport, rural development, etc., contract labour (including para teachers) is hired at low wages and made to do a lot of work. There is no guarantee of their employment either. On the other hand, government is not hiring permanent employees even when there are hundreds of thousands of vacancies.
On 11th July 2012, under the banner of All Rajasthan State Employees Coordination Committee, a massive demonstration of more than 20,000 employees in the form of a dharnawas held to press for their demands at the industrial park near the Statue Circle in Jaipur. The dharna was organised under the leadership of Shri Hanuman Prasad Sharma, former President of the Rajasthan Teachers Union (Progressive) and Vice President of the All India Council of Lok Raj Sangathan. In this dharna, thousands of contract and anganwadi workers, Saathins, NREGA, Friends of Students and other employees participated.
Addressing the dharna at the Hanumangarh district headquarters, senior leader Hanuman Prasad Sharma said that if the government does not address our demands, then we will have to intensify our movement. Opposing the Pension Fund Regulatory Development Authority (PFRDA) Bill to be presented in the Monsoon session of the Parliament, he put forward the demand that the pay and perks offered to the central government employees under the 6th Pay Commission should also be made available to the state government employees from 1 January 2006.
He said that the next stop in the struggle would be on 9th August 2012, which will be observed as Revolution Day and on this day there will be demonstrations in each Tehsil headquarter throughout the state and petitions will be submitted.
Others who addressed the dharna were the State Convenor of the Coordination Committee, Omprakash Sharma, State Coordinator Jaydev Joshi, State Paricharak Sangh Mahamantri Pawan Parikh, State President of Rajasthan Krishi Paryavekshak Sangh Amar Singh Saharan, State Mahamantri of Patwar Sangh Sudarshan Kumar, State President of Rajasva Karmachari Sangh Brijmohan Verma, State President of the Teachers Union (Shekhavat) Har Lal Dhaka, State President of Teacher’s Union (Progressive) Bhuraram Saharan, State President of Patwar Sangh Patram Bhambhu, State President of Mantralayik Karmachari Sangh Ramesh Raheja, State President of Nurses Association Guganram Saharan, etc.
The demands raised in the petition addressed to the Chief Minister are as follows:
- Remove the anomalies of the 6th Pay Commission
- After the implementation of the 6th Pay Commission, instead of immediate higher grade pay after getting Selection grade pay scale after 9, 18 and 27 years, to continue the old system of giving the grade pay of the next promoted position. To give selection grade pay scale to teachers on parity with other state employees since 1998.
- To withdraw the new recruitment rules implemented since January 2006 and recruit according to the old recruitment rules and to give regular pay scales.
- Increase the grade pay of those categories / positions that require Secondary to Higher/Senior Secondary educational qualifications.
- Immediate halt to recruitment on contract basis. Employees recruited earlier to be regularised based on their qualification for government service.
- A policy for transfers and stop the transfers on political grounds.
- Give permanent employment to Anganwadi workers, Sahayikas, Saathins and Sahyoginis and they be declared state employees.
- Stop layoffs, elimination of positions and privatisation. To ensure trade unions to be registration within 45 days. Minimum monthly salary should not be less than 10,000 Rupees.
- Housing and vehicle loan facilities, advances for by grains and for festivals to restarted.
- Timely payment of salaries and perks to all state employees including those working in Panchayats.
- Departmental selection committees for promotion of state employees should meet regularly to effect promotions.