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Calcutta HC directs state to hold meeting to make GTA contract employees permanent

Calcutta High Court
The Calcutta High Court today directed the state government to convene a meeting with representatives of the GTA in four months to decide how it would set in motion the process of absorbing nearly 5,800 casual employees at the hill body in permanent posts.

"The state government will have to convene a meeting within four months with representatives of the Gorkha Territorial Administration. At the said meeting, two representatives of the Janmukti Asthayi Karmachari Sangathan will be present. The state government will have to start the process of absorbing casual employees into permanent posts at the meeting," Justice Sanjib Banerjee said in the order. as well as the present Trinamul Congress dispensation and did not make Gorkha Territorial Administration enacted Janmukti Asthayi Karmachari of the high court Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC) Since 2007, when the Gorkha Janmukti Morch was formed, JAKS, a frontal organization of the party, had been demanding regularisastion of their jobs.start the reguralisation process. fax had promoted the Morcha to break their hunger strike.

Since, 2011, a Group D worker of the DGHC started received a minimum salary of not less than Rs 6,600 from the previous Rs 3,500. Similarly, Group C and B workers started receiving anything between anything between Rs 8,000 and Rs 12,000 per month depending on the position and the grade. Group C and B workers of the DGHC were earlier receiving Rs 4000 and 6000 respectively. Those working in Group A category started receiving a minimum of Rs 21,000 from the earlier Rs 9,500. Moreover, a provision for increment of five percent in the pay-band every three years was also made for the workers.The court has also directed two members of JAKS be included in the meetings to work out the modalities of the regularisation process."Section 54 (2) of the GTA Acts also states: "The Gorkhaland Territorial Administration, may, make appointment of persons to such categories of sanctioned posts as are equivalent to Group B, Group C and Group D posts under Government after making regulations relating to the conditions of service of such persons with the approval of the Governor subject to the budgetary provisions including, long term liabilities of post retirement benefits such as pension, gratuity etc. Such appointments shall be made through a Subordinate Service Selection Board to be set up for this purpose."

"Through this judgment, the process of forming the SSS Board will also be expedited. This is a win-win situation for the party."

According to the Act, the state public service commission has to be consulted for appointments in Group A posts.


Source: The Telegraph


GJM backed GTA casual workers welcome HC order


The Gorkha Janmukti Morcha (GJM) backed casual workers union has welcomed the order of Calcutta High Court directing the West Bengal government and the Gorkhaland Territorial Administration (GTA), to start the process of regularization of the ad-hoc workers within four months.
Speaking over phone from Kolkata on Thursday, Machendra Subba, president of the Janmukti Asthayi Karmachari Sangathan (JAKS) said, “We are elated today because of the HC order. The demand for regularization is our long pending demand and now we are seeing a ray of light for a new beginning”.
Sources said judge Sandip Banerjee during the day issued an order directing the state government and the GTA to initiate meetings within four months to start the process of regularizing the ad-hoc workers. The judge in his direction also made it binding for two representatives of JAKS to be present in all meeting between the state and the Hills council
body.
Following prolonged agitation after its formation in 2007 which included hunger strike and demonstrations in front of government and GTA offices, the Sangathan last year in November had filed a writ petition in the HC for regularization of ad-hoc workers.
At present more than 6,000 people are employed on ad-hoc basis in the GTA. These workers were initially employed on contractual basis by former Gorkha National Liberation Front (GNLF) leader Subash Ghisingh, in the now defunct Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council (DGHC). They were given Rs.1800 to Rs.2300 as remunerations.
In 2009, the CPM-led state government had assured to regularize 3472 workers under sanctioned posts with increased salary, to pacify the agitating casual workers. However, the assurance was never fulfilled even though after the GTA was formed in 2011, the worker’s salary had been increased.
The JAKS president said, “We request the state government and the GTA to start the process of regularizing the ad-hoc workers at the earliest.”
In Darjeeling, Binay Tamang, in-charge of the GTA’s personnel and administrative department also welcomed the HC order and assured to comply with the direction. “For more than 20 years during the DGHC tenure these ad-hoc workers suffered. Now after years of struggle they are bearing the fruit. We will definitely comply with the HC order,”
he said when asked to comment.

GJM, it may mentioned, had been pursuing with the state government the issue of regularization of casual workers in GTA but the issue got momentum after the high court writ petition. GTA authorities would have to wait for the copy of the order to calculate the financial implications of regularization of casual workers.

Tamang, who is also a GTA Sabhasad and the GJM assistant secretary, was of the opinion that the high court order may have ramification. “We feel that the HC order will open similar avenues for ad-hoc workers that are there in other parts of Bengal,” he said. The GTA executive member said the process for regularization of the ad-hoc workers would be started once it received the HC order. (EOIC)

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