Power Strike Over, Govt Puts On Holds Controversial Joint Venture

SRINAGAR: In a major mid-night development, the government has accepted the demands of the striking energy sector employees and an agreement has been reached. This has led to the conclusion of the strike that had started Friday night. The 4-point agreement has been reached between the two sides in Jammu with the Divisional Commissioner Jammu leading the government side.

The government has agreed to set up a committee to look into the issues pertaining to the problems that PDD engineers are facing in CVPPL that has 49 per cent stakes by the PDD.

The government also agreed to put on hold the joint venture that it wanted to sign with the Power Grid Corporation of India. Now a committee comprising all stakeholders would make recommendations on way forward.

While the government has agreed to ensure the employees working with the power corporations will get their salary in time, a mechanism has been agreed upon by the two sides.

The government has also agreed that the interests of the employees as mentioned in Government Order 191will be implemented in letter and spirit.

The two-page document is signed by the stakeholders including the leader of the striking employees and various power corporations. The agreement has written in green ink: “On the assurances, the JKPEECC as called off its strike with immediate effect. Work to resume immediately.” The meeting seems to have started late on December 20 and concluded past night on December 21. So it carries both dates, one printed and hand-written.

The JKPEECC had gone on strike on Monday night after the government insisted that it will go ahead with the JV that was basically to be signed on December 13. Though Kashmir remained impacted by the distribution of over 300 MW power supply, most of Jammu remained in darkness for the last two nights. Though the army MES was deployed in certain areas, its utility remained restricted. The employees who were on strike comprised most of the 22000 staffers and daily wagers who run the energy show in Jammu and Kashmir.

The agreement came within less than 10 hours after LG Manoj Sinha insisted that reforms will go on and some people’s wishes would make no difference. He had promised the restoration of the power supply by Tuesday as people from the army, NHPC, REC and other energy linked organisations had been deployed.

Divisional Commissioner Jammu had an unsuccessful meeting with the striking employees on Sunday. In the second meeting on Monday, he said he has the mandate to take decisions. During the day, Chief Secretary had also taken a meeting in which enough hints were dropped about the willingness to accept the demands.

Sachin Tickoo, who was spearheading the strike in Jammu aid the deadlock was over following the marathon meetings between civil administration and representatives of the Unions of striking employees. He said they are satisfied with the administration’s response to their demands.

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