Assam Govt Employees Declare 2-Day Strike to Demand OPS
The All Assam Government NPS Employees’ Association (AAGNPSEA) has called for a strike on Tuesday and Wednesday to restore the Old Pension Scheme (OPS).
Demanding the cancellation of the National Pension Scheme (NPS), AAGNPSEA president Achyutananda Hazarika said, “The NPS was implemented in the state in 2005. We have been protesting this pension system.”
Giving the example of five states that have restored the OPS, he said, “Just like the other states, the Assam government should restore the OPS. But the government hasn’t responded to our demand. Government employees have been complaining that the NPS has not been working for their benefit and demanding the restoration of the OPS so that they can lead a secured retired life.”
According to The Sentinel, Hazarika said that a joint meeting of 55 organisations, including teachers and employees, decided on July 9 to strike on August 22 and 23.
“We will submit a memorandum to the Prime Minister [Narendra Modi] and chief minister [Himanta Biswa Sarma] through every district commissioner’s office,” he added.
“The strike will be supported by various organisations, mainly the All Assam Heads of the Department Ministerial Officers’ Association, All Assam District Administration Employees Association, All Assam Transport Employees Association and All Assam Primary Teachers Association,” he said.
In January, AAGNPSEA had warned of intensifying its agitation if the government does not fulfil the demand, the PTI had reported.
“The government hasn’t heeded to our demand even after repeated assurances,” Hazarika had said at a press conference in Guwahati.
AAGNPSEA claimed that retired employees get a nominal monthly pension, making sustenance impossible. Hazarika had also said that Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, Punjab and Himachal Pradesh “have already restored” the OPS.
“If the government fails to act, we will intensify our protests,” he added.
AAGNPSEA had organised a foot march in Guwahati on November 8 last year attended by more than 20,000 government employees and leaders and members of workers’ federations from other states. A sit-in demonstration was also organised in the state capital on December 21.
Assam has around five lakh government employees, of which around 2.4 lahk are under the NPS.
The demand to restore OPS has been increasing in the country. Recently, a huge mobilisation was organised in New Delhi at Ram Lila Maidan.
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