ISLAMABAD: Dozens of employees of the Gun and Country Club (GCC) have been on strike, protesting outside the press club for around two weeks now. They say their jobs and rights were threatened and accused the incumbent management of the club, led by its administrator MNA Daniyal Aziz, of terminations, threats, and illegal appointments.
The employees have been on strike since January 10, leaving the club management with just a handful employees to run the day-to-day affairs of the club. “Employees are being harassed and abused on a daily basis by the management,” said Yasir Javaid, a protester who has also accused Aziz of physical assault. “I had lodged a complaint with the Aabpara police but no action was taken by them. I have now filed a petition in the court of Additional District and Sessions Judge Zeba Chaudry, seeking directions for the police to lodge a criminal case against Aziz,” he said. He has also been sacked by the management on disciplinary grounds. Protesters say they had no job security and no uniform pay scale.
The club management says that a few members of the club were behind the agitation for their ‘financial and political interests’. A GCC official, requesting anonymity, claimed a member of the club who had also been awarded a Rs50 million contract in the past to renovate some facilities was motivating the agitation of the employees, along with a few other members. He also claimed that some of the protesters had stolen data, funds, and keys.
The official added that they would lodge a complaint with the police as well as FIA against those who had taken important data and records with them. GCC Secretary Ather Rauf Bhatti said the protesters and their handlers had planned to shut down the club but they have been frustrated as the management had succeeded in running the club smoothly, despite agitation by “15 to 20 people”.
Published in The Express Tribune, January 23rd, 2017.
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