Srinagar/Jammu : The Employees Joint Consultative Committee an amalgam of several employee association on Monday sought immediate release of the salaries of 2500 employees of the erstwhile State Forest Corporation (SFC) suspended by the government after Jammu & Kashmir was accorded the status of Union Territory on August 5 last year.The EJCC leaders have threatened street protests if the Lt Governor and Chief Secretary don’t resolve the pending demands particularly release of salaries immediately.
In a statement issued here on Monday the Chairman Employees Joint Consultative Committee (EJCC) Aijaz Ahmad Khan said “on becoming UT ,the employees of the erstwhile Jammu & Kashmir state were shown green pastures but contrary to the general impressions created among the people that after the erstwhile state changing into UT the government employees shall be largely benefited by the centre, the government employees of Jammu and Kashmir have become the worst sufferers, be it regularisation of daily wagers, modifications of SROs, or the release of salaries. and has miserably failed to address the concerns.
Citing the example is of 2005 employees of state forest corporation , Khan said the employees are without salaries as corporations has been suspended and consequently over two employees of the corporation have become the the worst victims under the new administrative and institutional arrangements in Jammu and Kashmir. Recalling that SFC was a sound and vibrant organisation in Jammu & Kashmir as it was being run on scientific lines to exploit and dispose off timber in pursuance to supreme court orders and as per SFC Act 1978 , Khan regretted that SFC was suspended at a time when the employees were demanding pension as per court orders, implementation of 7th pay commission and conduct of departmental promotion committee (DPC) which was delaye for three long years. Recalling that the employees of SFC were also demanding equating of DA by releasing 39% balance payments and release of 6th pay commission arrears, Khan said “the decision of govt to convert this organisation into a company further aggravated the problems already faced by the employees”.
While deliberating upon the demands put forth by Jammu & Kashmir Forest Employees Forum (JKFCEF) , senior leaders of EJCC Aijaz Ahmad Khan and Suresh Sharma lamented the dilatory tactics of the MD as well as of the govt. Calling upon the government to settle their pending issues on priority the EJCC leaders said “the government apathy has brought employees are at the verge of starvation for want of release pending pay of last three months” adding that “It is criminal on the part of employer to with-hold the pay of the SFC employees for such a long time when poor employees are facing huge financial hardship due to covid 19”.
Saying that formation of new Forest Development Corporation (FDC) may take time, the EJCC leaders said “it is prime duty of the managing director to release pay, even by taking over draft from the bank till grant in aid is released by the govt as already sanctioned by Govt of India”, Khan and sharma didn’t rule out any conspiracy of hidden hands in the uprecedented delay in the release of SFC employees just to tarnish the image of the present Lieutenant Governor and chief secretary. “This will not be tolerated any more and employees will come on roads” Said a spokesman of JKFCEF . The leaders said, that “if the pay is not released immediately, EJCC cadre will strongly support any protest program of JKFCEF (Jammu & Kashmir Forest Corporation Employees Forum) and government itself shall be responsible for the consequences “. The leaers appealed Lieutenant Governor and Chief Secretary for their intervention and immediate resolution of salary release issue and all other pending demands. .