BHUBANESWAR: Bhubaneswar Municipal Corporation (BMC) on Thursday instructed private sanitation contractors to ensure payment of minimum wages to sweeping staff as per labour laws.
The decision was taken after more than 1,000 sweepers ceased work for a day, throwing everyday sanitation of the Capital into haywire. BMC Mayor AN Jena assured the agitating workers that their demands will be met.
As per the new sanitation contract, 60 wards of the Corporation have been leased out to three private contractors under the new Municipal Solid Waste (MSW) management project. The contractors have engaged about 40 sweepers in each ward.
The sweepers protested stating that they are being paid `100 per day, much less than `150 - the minimum wage prescribed under labour laws.
Jena assured the sweepers that their wages will be hiked in accordance to the provision of labour laws, but also asked them to put in eight hours of work everyday. The working hours can be distributed throughout the day, which might include a four-hour shift in the morning and another four-hour shift in the evening.