VIJAYAWADA: Members of the VMC Employees Union on Monday began a relay hunger strike demanding that the civic body scrap GO No 279 intended to endorse the task of maintenance of sanitation in the city to private consultants. Major trade unions like AITUC, CITU, YSRTUC, INTUC and AICCTU are backing the relay hunger strike.
Addressing the gathering at the protest camp, Municipal Corporation Employees Union State secretary M David said that despite several protests, the VMC had unilaterally passed a resolution in the recent council meeting to invite open tenders for sanitation maintenance in the city.
“GO No 279 would eventually lead to the displacement of the workers,” he alleged. The Union leader said that the VMC was blindly endorsing the sanitation in the city to private consultants without learning any lessons from the episode of Mumbai private firm BVG India Limited. “On a pilot basis, the private consultant from January this year had monitored sanitation on Mahatma Gandhi Road, Eluru Road and NH stretch between Ramavarappadu to Benz circle till March,” he said.
David accused that the BVG had duped 120 sanitation workers as it did not pay their wages of `8,000 per month till date. “The contractors would cut down the manpower and utilise limited work force, to save big bucks. Also, they would not pay the workers as per the standards. The big corporate companies will only exploit the workers’ capabilities,” David said.
Union president K Umamaheswara Rao alleged that VMC was keen at terminating the services of DWCRA groups and handover the sanitation contracts to its own party leaders.