Trade union warns hunger strike over vacancies, project delay in Odisha's Paradip Port Trust

A senior PPT officer admitted that vacancies in major posts have delayed infrastructure related activities but in-charge officials are handling cargo and other works.

Published: 06th October 2021 07:58 AM  |   Last Updated: 06th October 2021 07:58 AM   |  A+A-

Vessels anchored at Paradip Port

Vessels anchored at Paradip Port. (Photo | Express)

By Express News Service

PARADIP: Demanding privatisation of port sector and filling of vacancies in important posts, trade union leaders along with workers of Paradip Port Trust (PPT) have vowed to intensify the stir and start a hunger strike unless their list of 12 demands are addressed by the Central government as well as PPT authorities. 

In a meeting at Paradip on Monday, trader union leaders under the banner of Bharatiya Bandar Mazdoor Sangh (BBMS) held discussions with PPT workers and employees on various issues and put forth the demands to the port administration in a memorandum. Expressing dissatisfaction, BBMS general secretary Srikant Ray said port workers have been deprived of basic facilities like drinking water, healthcare, Covid-19 vaccination and other incentives. 

Besides, nothing has been done to implement different projects for port development. Ray said, a 10-million-litre per day (MLD) desalination plant was planned to be set up at the cost of Rs 116 crore to address acute water scarcity and an MoU signed between the National Institute of Ocean Technology (NIOT), Chennai and PPT in 2019 but no progress has been made till now. 

Similarly, a multipurpose berth to handle clean cargo including containers of five MTPA capacity was inaugurated by Minister of Road Transport and Highways, Shipping and Water Resources Nitin Gadkari in 2019 but is yet to function.

Other works like outer harbour port expansion for the erection of eight new berths to cater to coal export volumes,  construction of a new western dock complex containing six berths with a combined capacity of 75 MTPA and a new township consisting of 1000 houses continue to remain only on pen and paper.

Different posts in PPT like secretary, deputy conservator, traffic manager, legal officer, vigilance officer, welfare officer apart from more than 20 clerical positions in different sections are lying vacant. Majority of the posts being operated as additional responsibilities resulting in project delays and other issues. A senior PPT officer admitted that vacancies in major posts have delayed infrastructure-related activities but in-charge officials are handling cargo and other works.


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