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Wednesday, September 30, 1998
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Ministerial staff block traffic
From Tribune Reporters

BATHINDA, Sept 29 — Hundreds of activists of different ministerial staff unions today blocked traffic for about an hour near the bus stand here in support of their demands.

Despite the threat of no work, no pay by the Punjab Government, the activists today observed a complete strike and government offices wore a deserted look.

Earlier, addressing a rally, the leader of Common Action Committee, Mr Harminder Singh Dhillon, alleged that the authorities concerned were deliberately delaying the implementation of their "accepted" demands.

Mr Kamal Krishan Aggarwal, general secretary, DCC, said the state government was suffering heavy losses due to no sale of stamp papers. He said people had started buying the stamp papers from Sirsa district of Haryana.

FEROZEPORE: Traffic on the G.T. Road here was disrupted on Tuesday when members of the Punjab State Ministerial Services Union took out a protest march and raised slogans against the Punjab Government.

Earlier, they held a rally in the district courts complex. They said if their demands were not met, an effigy of the Chief Minister would be burnt.

Tight security arrangements were made to face any eventuality.

Meanwhile, work in various government offices was paralysed as the pen-down strike by the ministerial staff entered its 15th day.

PATHANKOT: Employees of the ministerial services observed a pen-down strike on a call given by the Punjab State Ministerial Services.

A rally was organised in front of the Treasury Office in which employees of the B and R, forest, public health and treasury participated and raised slogans against the state government.

They blocked traffic and gheraoed the Punjab Education Minister, Mr Tota Singh, at Government Girls School and gave him a memorandum of their demands.

NAWANSHAHR: Work in government offices remained paralysed as members of the Ministerial Services Union continued with their pen-down strike.

The union staged a dharna in front of the office of the DC and organised a rally which was addressed by Mr Pakhar Singh Chahal and Mr Balbir Singh Jadla, both CPM leaders, and Mr Darshan Lal Jethumajara, state secretary, BSP, besides other union leaders. They condemned the "dictatorial" attitude of the Badal government towards the strike.

The union later blocked traffic and burned effigies of the Chief Minister.

GURDASPUR: Employees of the Ministerial Staff Association held a protest march and blocked traffic for an hour.

They also held a rally in front of the office of the Deputy Commissioner.

Their demands included promotion after four, nine and 14 years of service, and reinstatement of retrenched teachers who were appointed on an ad hoc basis for 89 days.

FATEHGARH SAHIB: The district unit of the Punjab State Ministerial Staff blocked traffic for an hour and staged a dharna in front of the District Treasury Office.

Members criticised the no work, no pay policy of the government and threatened to intensify the agitation if their demands were not accepted.

ROPAR: Employees of the ministerial services staged a dharna in front of the Treasury Office here on Tuesday and later held a rally at the local mini-secretariat.

They burnt copies of a letter issued by the government regarding the no work, no pay rule.

AMRITSAR: The payment of hundreds of crores of rupees has been withheld due to the strike by the Punjab State Ministerial Services Union.

Due to the alleged dilly-dallying attitude of the state government towards the demands of the ministerial staff, government employees and pensioners are unlikely to get their salaries and pensions on time. The ministerial staff has decided to observe "black Diwali and "black Dasehra". Mr Didar Singh, district president of the Punjab State Ministerial Service Union said this time the government employees would not get bonus and other benefits well in time for Dasehra and Diwali.

The monthly payments due to employees and pensioners was more than Rs 25 crore.

He said the financial crisis of the state was also likely to be aggravated as the revenue which was in crores of rupees was not being deposited in the district Treasury Office due to the strike.

Most of the paddy growers were not getting timely payment as the letters of credit worth crores of rupees was also withheld due to the strike.

Work in offices was paralysed due to a traffic blockade near the Circuit House chowk for more than two hours.

PATIALA: Agitating ministerial employees blocked traffic in front of the District Treasury Office on the Sirhind road for three hours.

The employees also held a dharna which was addressed by district president Rattan Kumar Gautam who threatened the state government that if the demands of the employees were not met, the agitation would be further intensified.

Later, Mr Gautam stated that the union would burn effigies of the state government tomorrow in front of the office of District Treasury to lodge its protest against the government's attitude towards their demands.

Meanwhile, the work was paralysed in the state government and semi-government offices of the different departments.

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