Srinagar, December 18: leader of centre of indian trade unions Mohammad Yousuf Tarigami Saturday assured his full support to the demands of thousands of Power employees in Jammu and Kashmir who have gone on indefinite pen down and tools down strike against the privatization of grid stations.
The employees, under the banner of Power Employees and Engineers Coordination Committee (PEECC), J&K, are demanding white paper on non-creations/regularization of engineers and PDL, TDL staff and casual labours besides opposing any move by the government to privatize this vital sector.
The Power Development Department was converted into a Corporation and the employees were assured release of timely wages, promotions, and regularization of daily wagers. However, it did not happen and now the government was trying to privatize the grid stations.
After converting the Department into a Corporation, the government did not fulfill the promises made to the employees which is sheer injustice with them. If the government moves ahead with any plan of privatization, not only the Power employees, but consumers too will have to bear the brunt.
The decision to privatize Power sector will hit consumers and traders hard as private players will increase tariff as per their own choice. Jammu and Kashmir is a poor state and the consumers will not be able to afford the increased tariff.
Time and again it has been pointed out by engineers in the rest of the country as to how the experiments of privatization and franchisee systems in power distribution have failed in several states. At the time of converting the PDD into power distribution companies, the government had claimed the decision was taken for the improvement of the power sector. But now they are going for privatization which is only being done to hand over the assets to big companies free of cost.
Privatization of electricity is no way for power sector reforms, rather it will impact adversely upon poor domestic consumers, medium and small industries and poor farmers. At a time when the economy is in a tailspin and the country is fighting the Covid19 pandemic, such proposals that will favour the wealthy while burdening the needy, are totally unacceptable.