MCD Workers Agree To Call Off Strike And Resume Work Before Delhi HC

08/02/2016 2:34 PM IST | Updated 15/07/2016 8:26 AM IST
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NEW DELHI, INDIA - FEBRUARY 3: Delhi MCD sanitation employees and MCD teachers shout slogans against the Delhi Government and Central Government during protest march from Nirman Vihar Metro Station to ITO near Delhi Secretariat for not being paid their salaries for the last three months, on February 3, 2016 in New Delhi, India. The agitating MCD staffs on Wednesday refused to call off their strike even as the mayors of the north and east Delhi municipal corporations said that they will accept the loan extended by the AAP government as a grant only. (Photo by Sonu Mehta/Hindustan Times via Getty Images)

NEW DELHI -- The sanitation workers of the three municipal corporations today agreed before the Delhi High Court to call off their strike and resume work immediately after MCD said they have released their wages which would be received by all within two days.

The workers claimed that majority of them have not received salaries for January 2016 though the corporations say that wages were released on February 5.

The municipal corporations of Delhi (MCDs) told a bench of Chief Justice G Rohini and Justice Jayant Nath that the funds were released on February 5, but as some zonal offices were closed, everyone may not have received the wages and those who have not got their salary will get it in a couple of days.

The bench, thereafter, took on record statements made by both sides and listed the matter on February 10 when it will also hear arguments on issues of payment of other arrears as well as unification of the corporations, which were raised today by unions representing the workers.

The court also took on record the corporations' statement that there would be no impediment in release of wages to the workers for the month of January.

During the brief hearing, the unions contended that salaries were not received by all as claimed by the MCDs.

They also said that trifurcation of the corporations had resulted in increase in expenditure by three times and sought unification of the three MCDs.

The court was hearing a PIL filed by Birender Sangwan who has sought lifting of garbage littered on streets due to the safai karamchaaris strike and that the stir be called off as it was causing hardship to the general public.

The submissions on behalf of the workers came pursuant to the court's notice to their respective unions on February 5 seeking their response to the PIL and the claim of the MCDs that salaries upto January 2016 have been released.

The court on that date had also remarked that sanitation workers cannot "hold the city to ransom" by going on strike if they have been paid their salary.

It had also asked the Delhi government whether it intended to enforce the Essential Services Maintenance Act (ESMA).

To this, senior standing counsel for the Delhi government, Rahul Mehra, today told the court that ESMA had been revoked by the city administration in 2015.

However, the petitioner submitted that ESMA of Haryana has been extended to Delhi.

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