More BSNL staff join strike


The management, on the other hand has refused to hold talks with any of the associations -- engineers or non-executive employees -- saying a solution has been provided to the employees and it is for them to decide now.

"We have taken enough precautions to ensure that our subscribers do not face any disruption in services, either mobile or land line," BSNL CMD Kuldeep Goyal said.

Non-executive employees will stay away from work for 48 hours, but may go on an indefinite strike if the management fails to address their demands, including wage hike.
"There is massive response to the call and more than two lakh workers are on strike.
Most of the offices are closed as nobody is available.

"The adamant and negative stand of the management... compelled the workers to go on strike. While we regret the inconvenience caused to the people, the strike is due to the unhelpful attitude of management," said VAN Namboodri, General Secretary, BSNL Employees Union and Convener of United Front.

The All India Graduate Telecom Officers Association of engineers yesterday went on an indefinite strike demanding that officers on deputation from the department of telecom be absorbed into the company so that they become more accountable.

BSNL has 5 crore subscribers with a market share of 15.57 per cent.

Giving the reasons behind the strike, Namboodiri had said that while top executives like the CMD and directors had taken a pay hike of 50-70 per cent, the BSNL management was offering only a 30 per cent pay-hike to the non-executives, and that was unacceptable.

"We are also demanding a five-year periodicity for wage revision with full fitments benefit, while the management is insisting on a 10-year periodicity," he said.

BSNL has been entangled in disputes with different unions within the organisation. Its plan to list on the bourses has met with opposition from the employees union. The PSU firm has also been losing market share to private competitors.

On strike by engineers, who have been demanding that officers on deputation from DoT must be absorbed, BSNL CMD said, "We have made an offer to the striking engineers as well as non-executive employees and it is for them to decide."

Asked whether the management has called the agitating employees for further talks, Goyal said "as of now there is no plan for holding further talks."

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