While the employees of power utilities continued to agitate against the government’s alleged negligence in resolving certain critical issues faced by them and the sector as a whole, Energy Secretary N. Srikant has stated that the government agreed to meet seven out of 10 of their demands.
He told The Hindu on Thursday that steps were taken to resolve the remaining three.
As far as the payment of DA was concerned, he said that the employees were requested to understand the financial situation as it involved about ₹500 crore. There was a freeze on payment of DA and the same was the situation in Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra and a couple of other States, he added.
On the issue of regularisation of staff, Mr. Srikant said he was looking for a solution, and on the issue of pension, which involved around ₹16,000 crore, the government was yet to take a policy decision.
“Mobilising such huge sums means taxing the people. The government will address the employees’ concerns at the earliest,” he asserted.
Meanwhile, a large number of employees staged a protest at Vidyut Soudha in Vijayawada under the aegis of the AP State Power Employees’ JAC alleging that the government was not dealing with them in a fair manner and it did not appear to be sincere about fulfilling the assurances Energy Minister Balineni Srinivas Reddy gave them during the recent discussions.
The police took some of the agitators into custody as they squatted at the entrance of the head offices of AP-Genco and AP-Transco pressing for early settlement of the operational and financial issues raised by them.