Activists call for case against PSM management

Activists call for case against PSM management


PPI December 10, 2020
PSM needs to pay off billions in dues to the SSGC before gas pressure to the steel mills is restored. PHOTO: REUTERS

Human and labour rights organisation urged the Sindh government on Wednesday to book the management of the Pakistan Steel Mills (PSM) for violating the Sindh Covid-19 Emergency Relief Ordinance, 2020, nearly two weeks after the industrial complex sacked over 4,500 employees.

In a joint statement, the rights organisations also moved the labour court to prevent the PSM from further layoffs during the pandemic, while at the same time calling for the Sindh government to approach the labour court on the matter.

Earlier, the PSM management had filed a petition in the labour court, seeking permission to sack another 4,000 employees. The management is obliged to submit a retrenchment plan to dismiss the remaining employees, in accordance with the Industrial and Commercial Employment (Standing Orders) Ordinance, 1968.

The court has fixed January 6 as the date for the next hearing.

However, contesting the move, human and labour rights organisations have called for the reinstatement of sacked employees and making the steel giant functional again. For the purpose, they have suggested that professionals be appointed to chalk out a plan.

Multiple foreign investors have expressed interest in making the PSM functional again and a parliamentary body, with both treasury and opposition members, may oversee the revival, the statement said.

It was signed by Pakistan Institute of Labour Education and Research executive head Karamat Ali, Nasir Mansoor of the National Trade Union Federation, Mahnaz Rahman of the Aurat Foundation and Zehra Khan of the Home Based Women Workers Federation, among others.

Published in The Express Tribune, December 10th, 2020.

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