Workers’ cries fall on deaf ears

Unions and govt employees protests; demand wage hikes.


Express May 30, 2011

ISLAMABAD:


Workers staged a protest demonstration at Aabpara Chowk here on Sunday demanding an increase in their salaries. They have also set up a strike camp at the main crossing for the past two weeks in protest.


Speaking to the protesters, All Pakistan Government Employees Confederation (APGEC)   representative, Haji Abdul Ghafar said it was quite unfortunate that the government and the so-called public representatives have not taken any notice of the grievances of the working class. However, the workers are determined to continue their strike till their demands are fulfilled, he said.

Commenting on the price hike, Ghafar said survival has become for the labourers difficult. “We are raising our voice but to no avail,” he regretted.

Representatives of the workers told The Express Tribune that the government should not discriminate against low ranked employees in the upcoming budget. They were of the view that the increase in salaries is justified in the present circumstances of uncertainty and unemployment. They are of the view that their salaries should be increased to the level of employees working in the Presidency, Supreme Court of Pakistan and Federal Bureau of Revenue.

Meanwhile Railway Mazdoor Ittehad has warned that it would stage a protest on Monday at Rawalpindi Railway Station. They have a plan to wear black bands and chain their hands as a sign of protest. Railway Islamic Centre and Railway Hospital employees would also join the protesters.

Published in The Express Tribune, May 30th, 2011.

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