As many as 200 workers for not getting wages for the last 15 months from the contractor of BSNL, on Tuesday, three workers climbed atop the tower, to press for the release of wages and threatened to end their lives. The BSNL Casual Contract Workers Union along with Sanjha Morcha, led by Jarnail Singh, President, staged a protest in front of the office of GM(Telephones), to press for the acceptance of their demands.Added here, the casual or indirect workforce is engaged in multiple field operations such as line or cable maintenance, network expansion, housekeeping, and clerical data entry through the Contractor. But BSNL continues to downplay the plight of contractual or casual workers arguing funds shortage.In a video clip circulated on social media, three BSNL workers can be seen protesting atop a tower. Earlier the talks between union and management prove inconclusive.In the meantime, the police reached near the tower and started pursuing the workers to come down, to diffuse the situation, while they were demanding water on feeling thirsty due to scorching heat wage. After great persuasion,One of the BSNL Casual Contract Workers Union members protesting at the ground Jasvir Sharma Malha said, we have worked hard for laying the wires but we have not been paid the wages for the last 15 months and we have been compelled to take this step of climbing the tower to register our protest.
Despite bringing the matter to the notice of the contractor and higher officials in the BSNL district office repeatedly, nothing has been done. We have only been fed with the excuse of unavailability of funds. Now that the situation has gone out of control, we were left with no other alternative but to stage a protest," he added.In protest, today three works – Gurpreet Singh Goldi, Fazilka, Sona Singh Jalalabad and Gurdip Singh of Ferozepur climbed atop the tower, to register and express our resentment for not accepting our genuine demands, said President Jarnail Singh.Jasvir Sharma Malla, Secretary of the Union said, there are two contractors of BSNL one from Delhi – Ajay Kumar Dhingra and other from Rajasthan. We are in all 200 workers working in Ferozepur Division.He said, the other trade unions have also agreed to support our demands and participate in the massive protest in case our demands are not met out.Partapl Narayan Dohre, GM BSNL said BSNL has no directly dealing with these workers. They have been engaged through the Contractor. We have been writing to the head office for release of funds and shortly it will be received and further disbursed to the contractor for payment to the workers.Later, on assurance from the GM that the payment to the workers through the contractors will be arranged within a period of one month, the workers came down from the tower.