APWD DRMs stage protest demanding implementation of 1/30th pay plus DA scheme

Report by: 
M SURESH KUMAR
Port Blair
10 Aug 2017

Daily rated workers employed in the Andaman Public Works Department for the past several years boycotted work on Thursday demanding implementation of Govt. of India’s order on grant of 1/30th pay plus DA scheme. Under the banner of Andaman Sarvajanik Nirman Vibhag Mazdoor Sangh (ASNVMS), workers of the agency across these islands serving various divisions of the lead construction agency criticized the administration for delaying the implementation of the government scheme.
Striking workers from city and rural pockets of South Andaman assembled in front of the Chief Engineer, APWD’s office and sat on a mass dharna from morning to evening.  The strike was total in all the Divisions under the APWD throughout the islands. The striking workers conducted mass demonstration/sit in in front of the office of the concerned Executive Engineers at outstations. The strike was successful at Diglipur, Mayabunder, Rangat, Kadamtala, Neil Island, Havelock, Little Andaman, Car Nicobar, Kamorta, Katchal and Campbell Bay.
At Port Blair, the striking workers were addressed by Mr B. Chandrachoodan, President and M. Boominathan, General Secretary of the Union.  They lashed out at the Administration and APWD for  not accepting the  demand of the Union to the Govt. of India’s order issued during 1988 on the above scheme. Addressing the workers, Mr B Chandrachoodan said that the Administration is discriminating against the daily rated mazdoors of APWD while the said benefit has already been extended to hundreds of daily rated workers working in the Port Blair Municipal Council. He said that about 4000 daily rated mazdoors working in APWD are kept denied of their legitimate financial benefits. The Union has conducted a series of agitation during the last few years.  He said that the Administration even after accepting the demand in principle, is unduly delaying the decision.