People's Democracy

(Weekly Organ of the Communist Party of India (Marxist)


No. 40

October 06, 2013








Employees, Teachers Gherao Vidhan Sabha

Strike Call for Nov 2013




NEARLY 20,000 employees and teachers of Haryana courted mass arrest on September 9, 2013, while laying a siege on the Vidhan Sabha (state assembly). That was also the occasion when their organisation, the Sarva Karmachari Sangh (SKS) of Haryana, also gave a call of strike in November 2013.


It is to be noted that the SKS of Haryana has continuously been fighting for the demands of employees and teachers.




Announcing the strike decision, SKS president Dharambir Singh Phogat criticised the anti-employee and anti-people stance of the Haryana government and urged continuing struggle on the demand and rights of employees. Haryana Karamchari Mahasangh president, Raj Singh Dahiya, announced on the occasion that all future agitations of employees would be conducted jointly.


The assembly siege was in reaction to the Haryana chief minister’s attitude, who called the SKS delegations twice for meeting, agreed to various demands, but did not implement a single demand even after more than a year. It was against this breach of confidence by the state government that the SKS state conference, held at Kaithal from April 19 to 21, 2013, decided launch a powerful agitation including the Vidhan Sabha Gherao on the second day of its monsoon session.


SKS and affiliated unions then printed and distributed among employees lakhs of handbills, apart from 30,000 wall posters. An audio cassette was also prepared for publicity.


Six jathas led by senior leaders of the SKS, were formed. They were senior vice president Sarbat Punia, chief organiser Virender Dangwall, deputy general secretary Jeevan Singh, vice president Man Singh, press secretary Master Vajeer Singh and women subcommittee convener Smt Sabita. These jathas were coordinated by SKS president Dharambir Phogat and general secretary Subhash Lamba. In addition, hundreds of sub-jathas were taken out by affiliated unions and district committees of the SKS.


These jathas passed through every district of Haryana and addressed employees’ meeting in various departments. They felt every employee of Haryana was anguished against the economic policies of the government.


Employees started to come to Yavnika Park in Panchkula from September 9 morning itself, carrying banners and placards. They came from all corners of Haryana and their enthusiasm was worth seeing. They came with provisions and food packets to stay for long in agitation. The site of the rally was as if there were a big fair. A big police force was deputed at the rally point and section 144 was imposed by the district administration.


The procession started at 2.0 p m from Yavnika Park, with employees shouting angry slogans against the Haryana government. The police stopped the procession Housing Board Chowk where the road was blocked by big barricades. The demonstrating employees tried to overcome the barricades and after a tussle for about one hour. But the SKS leaders made it clear to the district administration that if they are not allowed to go ahead, they would not go back either. Employees then sat at a dharna at the Housing Board Chowk and forced the administration to arrest them. At a later stage the administration managed about 24 buses and had to arrest the employees. About 1500 employees courted arrest, but the government did not have enough space in jails to keep them behind the bars. All the arrangement of the government thus failed to deter the employees. District officers had to accept that they were unable to arrest all the employees.


Senior leaders of the SKS met the MLAs and MPs of all the political parties and submitted memoranda of their demands, appealing to them to raise the pertinent issues in Vidhan Sabha.


AIKS president Master Shar Singh, SKS founder president Phool Singh Sheokand, CPI(M) state secretariat member and former MLA Harpal Singh, state CITU general secretary Satbir Singh and vice president Karam Singh Balwant Bura addressed the rally and assured the employees of full support from their organisations. They criticised the anti-people policies of privatization, outsourcing, contractisation and public private partnership, and demanded that the government reach an immediate settlement on the employees’ demands.


Abhay Chowtala, leader of the main opposition party INLD and INLD president Ashok Arora came to the dharna along with 21 MLAs and supported the demands of employees. They promised to concede these demands in case an INLD government comes to power. They also spoke in favour of setting up an employees commission with employees themselves as members.




The main demands of employee’s teachers were as under:

1) Stop to the policies of outsourcing, PPP, privatisation, contractisation, franchisees in government departments of public concern.

2) Removal of pay anomalies, implementation of pay grades and allowances at par with the central employees.

3) Formation of an anti-sexual harassment committee in every government and private department.

4) Release of letter of cashless medical facilities.

5) Increase in minimum wages to Rs 15,000 per month.

6) Equal pay for equal work, for contract employees till regularisation; pay scale equivalent to that in Punjab for the ministerial staff, police, revenue and forest employees; strict enforcement of basic labour laws and stringent punishment for the principal employer and contractor who violate the laws.

7) Restoration of the staff ratio in universities.

8) Allotment of five percent plot quotas for HUDA employees

9) Recognition of all central scheme workers as government employees; till then disbursal to them of a minimum wages of Rs 15,000 per month; benefit of past services to those employees who were retrenched in the past and who were later absorbed in various departments.

10) Grant of maternity leave of six months for non-regular women workers.

11) Special 15 days extra casual leave per year for working women after reaching 40 years of age.

12) 60 day special leaves for hysterectomy.

13) Filling up of vacant posts in all the government departments through permanent recruitment.


It was a matter of severe grief that during the gherao, Krishan Lal Sharma, a retired activist of the Haryana Roadways Worker Union, died due to heart attack. He was earlier the president of Retired Karamchari Sangh in Sadhora block of Yamunanager district. While the procession was on the move, he fell unconscious on the road. He was immediately taken to Civil Hospital in Sector 6, Panchkula, but was declared dead after half an hour. SKS general secretary Subhash Lamba and other leaders went to Sadhora to take part in the cremation and respectfully recalled his services. The SKS has demanded a job for his son and Rs 10 lakh compensation for the family.


Two principal organisations of employees and teachers in Haryana --- Sarva Karmachari Sangh and Haryana Karamchari Mahasangh --- have now decided to join hands in all future agitations and a coordination committee has been constituted for the purpose. This will include the president and general secretary of both the organisations. Efforts are being made to coordinate and involve the employees unions at the Secretariat and directorate level to broaden the platform. The programme of agitation and the date of the proposed strike would be finalised and announced in a joint state level convention.