BBMP on back foot as workers protest pending pay

BBMP on back foot as workers protest pending pay

Municipal workers protest outside the BBMP head office on Wednesday demanding the payment of their wages. DH PHOTO/Chandrahas Kotekar

The BBMP on Wednesday admitted to serious problems in implementing the direct payment of salaries to municipal workers (pourakarmikas). 

Pourakarmikas have already hit the streets, saying the civic body hasn’t paid them since January. 

The BBMP is yet to sort pourkarmikas on a seniority basis and regularise their employment. It hasn’t deleted fake names from the biometric rolls either although the process began in January. While many pourakarmikas working for many years have not been included in the biometrics, newcomers have made it. 

At the BBMP’s monthly council meeting on Wednesday, some corporators said pourakarmikas were yet to get Employees’ State Insurance (ESI) and Provident Fund (PF) benefits that were available to them under the contract system. Sarfaraz Khan, said: “We will consider pourakarmikas on a seniority basis. Only those who have worked for at least a year will be considered. We have 16,000 workers and will hire another 3,000-4,000.” 

He added that ESI and PF benefits were delayed because of a mismatch between the data given by the contractors and the BBMP’s own record. 

The BBMP is also planning to allot a pourakarmika to every 500 people in tune with the recommendation of the IPD Salappa committee. The current ratio stands at 700:1. Khan promised a decision in three days. 

Maitreyi Krishnan, of the BBMP Guttige Pourakarmikara Sangha, urged the civic body not to remove freshers but regularise their employment. According to him, pourakarmikas do not get a weekly off.

On corporators’ complaints that basic equipment such as broomstick, gloves, and pushcarts have not been given to pourakarmikas, Mayor R Sampath Raj said: “We will distribute the equipment after taking a report in three days.” 

Opposition leader in the BBMP council, Padmanabha Reddy, said the civic body was paying for the mid-day meal of 30,000 pourakarmikas, though there are only 16,000-odd workers.