As sanitation workers in east Delhi continued their strike for the fourth day, the East Delhi Municipal Corporation Sunday engaged private contractors to pick up garbage. Areas such as Krishna Nagar, Laxmi Nagar, Geeta Colony and Nirman Vihar remained worst hit.
Civic officials said the EDMC has hired about 30 trucks and five loaders to lift garbage that will be taken to Ghazipur landfill site. The cleaning is being done at night and EDMC has written to DCPs concerned to provide “sufficient police force” for removal and transport of garbage to the landfill site.
This is the fifth time in two years that sanitation workers have gone on strike owing to delayed salaries. Safai karamcharis form the D category of civic employees, who are supposed to be the first to receive salaries as per MCD rules. While safai karamcharis have not received salaries for two months, A and B category employees remain unpaid since September.
East Delhi mayor Satya Sharma said with a monthly salary bill of approximately Rs 124 crore, the government’s fund of Rs 119 crore will be just enough to pay salaries for the corporation’s safai karamcharis. “The workers will be paid as soon as funds come in but that will not solve this crisis,” she said. She added that salaries of doctors and teachers are also delayed, and they “may go on strike soon”.
Deputy CM Manish Sisodia said he had approved the release of Rs 119 crore to the EDMC on Saturday and the amount would be released Monday. The amount, he said, should strictly be used to pay sanitation workers’ salaries.
Sanjay Gehlot, president, MCD Swachhta Karamchari Union, said, “We want a permanent solution. Going on strikes is our only resort.”
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