Thursday, 01 June 2023 06:12 GMT

Maha Govt Agreeable To OPS, Employees Call Off Weeklong Strike (Ld)


Mumbai, March 20 (IANS) Following a successful round of negotiations with the Maharashtra government, around 18 lakh government employees in the state called off their weeklong indefinite strike to press for the contentious issue of implementing the Old Pension Scheme (OPS), a top leader said here on Monday.

The convenor of the striking unions' coordination committee, Vishwas Katkar, said that the state government has agreed 'in principle' to consider the issue of bringing back OPS, which was discontinued in 2005 owing to various reasons.

The much-awaited discussions were held on Monday afternoon between Chief Minister Eknath Shinde, top state officials, Katkar and other union representatives.

'The government has assured that OPS will definitely be implemented, and our salaries shall not be affected. This has also been given to us in writing... They will also withdraw the show-cause notices issued to the strikers. We will also fully cooperate with the government on this issue,' Katkar told mediapersons.

In view of the positive outcome, Katkar and other leaders said that the strike has been called off with immediate effect and all employees will resume normal duties from Tuesday.

Later on Monday, Shinde informed about the development and reiterated that the government is completely positive towards the employees' demands.

'We have constituted a committee to examine this matter and its report will be received soon, after which we shall take an appropriate decision,' Shinde said.

The Chief Minister said that all the state government and semi-government employees have been on strike since March 14, while the Maharashtra State Gazetted Officers' Federation has given a separate notice of strike from March 28.

'After the discussions today, the employees and gazetted officers' associations have responded positively to our appeal and have decided to withdraw their strike,' said Shinde among thumping of benches by the ruling alliance legislators.

Katkar also thanked the Opposition Maha Vikas Aghadi (MVA) for supporting the strikers and raising their issue in the legislature, and appreciated the government for positively considering the staffers' pending demand on OPS.

From Tuesday, all government, semi-government offices, schools, junior colleges, government hospitals and other departments where Class III-IV employees had gone on strike are expected to resume normal functioning.




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