The BSNL Management is in the process of implementing E-Office. However, in this process the Non-Executive cadres like JAO, SOA, AOS and OS are being sidelined. Their jobs are limited to “scanning the documents, rearranging the files”, etc. This clearly indicates that the aforementioned Non-Executive cadres are being converted into Group Ds. BSNLEU has written to the CMD BSNL, expressing it’s disagreement and demanding to take necessary remedial steps.
BSNLEU is continuously demanding payment of salary on the due date. So far Management has not disbursed salary of February, 2021. BSNLEU has written to the CMD BSNL, demanding immediate payment of the salary with 6% simple interest. The demand for payment of interest is raised, based on the recent judgement of Hon’ble Supreme Court, in the Civil Appeal No.399, of 2021 (The State of Andhra Pradesh and Another Vs. Mrs. Dinavahi Lakshmi Kameswari). In this case, the Hon’ble Supreme Court has directed payment of the deferred salary with 6% simple interest.
Responding to the proposal of the Recruitment Branch of the BSNL Corporate Office, to hold the LICEs of the Non-Executives online, BSNLEU has written a firm reply. In the letter addressed to the Director (HR), BSNLEU has reasoned that, Non-Executive cadres like TT and ATT do not have access to computer in their day to day works. Hence, they are not familiar to computer operations. Thus, holding the LICEs of the Non-Executives online, will create much hardship to the Non-Executives, stated BSNLEU in the letter.
Based on the writ petition filed by BSNLEU, the Hon’ble Kerala High Court has given direction to the DPE on 17.02.2021, directing it to pay IDA to the Non-Executives of BSNL. However, the DPE has written a letter to the DoT on 09.03.2021, directing it to take necessary action. The DPE has mentioned in it’s letter that it issues order, in respect of payment of IDA only for the Executives and Non-Unionised Supervisors of the CPSEs and not in respect of the Non-Executives. Hence, the DPE has directed the Secretary, DoT, to take necessary action on this matter, since BSNL comes under the administrative control of the DoT. In view of this, BSNLEU has written letter to Shri Anshu Prakash, Secretary, DoT, today, requesting him to issue necessary direction to the BSNL Management for the payment of 5.5% IDA w.e.f. 01.10.2020 and 6.1% IDA w.e.f. 01.01.2021 to the Non-Executives of BSNL.
The Hon’ble Kerala High Court has directed that the IDA instalment (5.5%), that has become due from 01.10.2020, should be paid to the Non-Executives. This judgement is delivered, on the writ petition filed by BSNLEU. After the judgement was delivered by the Hon’ble Kerala High Court, General Secretary, BSNLEU, wrote to the Secretary, DPE, and requested him to implement the court decision by issuing order for payment of the IDA. The Secretary, DPE, has forwarded the General Secretary’s letter to the Secretary, Telecom, and has directed him to take the necessary action.
Front Line Workers such as doctors, nurses, health workers, police personnel, etc., have already received COVID-19 vaccination on priority basis. From March 01st onwards, citizens above the age of 60 years, as well as citizens above the age of 45 years and who are having co-morbidities, are being vaccinated. BSNL employees are having close interaction with the general public and are highly susceptible to COVID-19 infection. Further, BSNL is also providing telecommunications services, which is declared as an essential service by the government. Hence, BSNLEU has written to Shri Ravi Shankar Prasad, Hon’ble Minister of Communications, requesting him to take steps to get the BSNL employees declared as "Front Line Workers" for getting COVID-19 vaccination on priority basis.
As known to all, in the writ petition filed by BSNLEU, the Hon’ble Kerala High Court has issued an interim order on 17.02.2021, directing the Secretary, DPE, to issue order for the payment of IDA to the Non-Executives of BSNL. Based on this, BSNLEU has written to the Secretary, DPE, enclosing copy of the order of the Hon’ble Kerala High Court and demanding to immediately issue order for the payment of the two instalments of IDA (5.5% + 6.1%).
BSNLEU is successfully organising countrywide hunger strikes today, demanding immediate payment of salary for the month of January, 2021, as well as payment of salary on the due date of every month and seeking settlement of some burning problems. Yesterday evening, the Corporate Office has issued a letter to all the CGMs, wherein it is stated that hunger strike amounts to strike. Further, the Management has also banned hunger strike, dharna, etc., in BSNL. Protesting against the issuing of such a letter, BSNLEU has written a detailed letter to the CMD BSNL today, stating that, nowhere in the Industrial Disputes Act, 1947, it is stated that, hunger strike amounts to strike. Further, BSNLEU has also stated that, by banning dharnas and hunger strikes, the Management is violating the Right to Assembly of the employees, as enshrined in Article 19(1)(b) of the Indian Constitution. BSNLEU has demanded withdrawal of this letter.
The Delhi High Court, in it’s order dated 20th January, 2021, has mentioned that the right to receive salary is the fundamental right according to Article 21 of the Indian Constitution. However, the BSNL Management is violating this fundamental right of the employees for the past one year. In continuation of the conciliation conducted yesterday, by the Deputy Chief Labour Commissioner (Central), BSNLEU has quoted this in it’s letter addressed to the Dy.CLC(C).
BSNLEU is consistently pressurising the BSNL Management and the DoT to issue Presidential Orders to around 400 Temporary Status Mazdoors (TSMs), who have been directly promoted as Telecom Technicians. Due to the efforts taken by BSNLEU, the BSNL Corporate Office has now sent the file for the approval of the DoT. BSNLEU has once again written to Shri Anshu Prakash, Secretary, Telecom, requesting him to get the matter examined and cause to issue the necessary Presidential Orders to the officials.
Based on the letters written by BSNLEU, the DPE has directed the DoT to take necessary action in the matter of payment of IDA to the Non-Executives of BSNL. Based on this, BSNLEU has written to the Secretary, Telecom, today, requesting him to issue necessary direction to the BSNL Management for the immediate payment of 5.5% IDA and 6.1% IDA that have become due w.e.f. 01.10.2020 and 01.01.2021, respectively.
The DR JEs recruited to a particular circle, are entitled to go on transfer under Rule 8 on completion of 5 years of service. However, these DR JEs are facing problems. In many places, their transfer applications are not being forwarded to the CGM Office, by the subordinate officers. When these applications are forwarded and get approved, the DR JEs are not being relieved under the pretext of shortage of JEs. BSNLEU has written to the Director (HR), seeking his intervention. BSNLEU has demanded that the transfer applications of DR JEs should not be withheld by the subordinate officers. Further, the officials should be relieved, soon after their transfer requests are approved.
The DPE is repeatedly clarifying that, the IDA freezing is not applicable to the Non-Executives. At the same time, the DPE is also not issuing order for the payment of two instalments of IDA (5.5% + 6.1%) to the Non-Executives. The writ petition filed by BSNLEU in the Hon’ble High Court of Kerala is likely to come up for hearing soon. In the meanwhile, BSNLEU has written to Shri Prakash Javadekar, Hon'ble Minister of Heavy Industries, seeking his intervention to ensure that the DPE issues letter immediately, for the payment of two instalments of IDA to the Non-Executives.
The BSNL employees posted in the Kashmir Valley are serving the nation under extremely hostile conditions. In view of this, the Government of India has extended a package of concessions / incentives to the employees working in the Kashmir Valley. These concessions / incentives have been extended by the Government of India from 01.01.2020 to 31.07.2021. BSNLEU, vide it’s letter no. BSNLEU/312 (J&K) dated 16.10.2020, has already requested the BSNL Management to implement the decision of the Government of India, and to make payment to the employees. However, as usual, the BSNL Management has not taken any action so far. Hence, BSNLEU has once again written to the Director (HR), BSNL, requesting to take expeditious action on the matter.
General Secretary has written to the CMD BSNL, intimating the decision of BSNLEU to organise lunch hour demonstrations on 05.02.2021, demanding timely payment of salary. In that letter, the General Secretary has referred to the recent judgement of the Hon’ble Delhi High Court. The Hon’ble Delhi High Court has stated that, the right to receive salary is a fundamental right enshrined under the Article 21 of the Constitution and that paucity of funds, cannot be an excuse for non-payment of salaries.