Despite indications that the state government was inclined to deal firmly with employees planning to strike work from August 17, the Telangana employees’ JAC has decided on Thursday to ignore attempts for a truce and take a direct plunge into the agitation, even if it means losing their jobs.
This was indicated by representatives of at least 147 employee associations, who are an integral part of the employees’ JAC, during the one-day dharna on Thursday held in support of the Telangana Political JAC’s call to make the proposed general strike from next week a big success.
The employees’ JAC, consisting of employees from government departments, state and central public sector undertakings, teachers, lecturers, university faculty and non-teaching staff, municipal and panchayat workers and several people’s organizations, has rallied behind the political JAC’s call to intensify the struggle and paralyse the administration in support of their demand for the introduction of Telangana Bill in Parliament.
“We have decided to strike work across the region in support of the aspirations of four crore Telangana people. We are neither afraid of being sent to jail nor losing our jobs. Even Andhra Pradesh Essential Services and Maintenance Act, 1971 (Esma) cannot stop us from achieving our goal. Nothing matters to us more than the sacrifices made by hundreds of students in support of the Telangana cause. We have been repeatedly betrayed by successive state governments regarding our jobs and even allocation of water,” T-JAC convener and TNGO president K Swami Goud said.
Responding to queries on the invitation of the state government to hold talks with them on Friday, Goud said the employees’ JAC would take a call in the morning.
Addressing the gathering, political JAC chairman M Kodandaram Reddy blamed the state government for precipitating the matter. “Had the CM showed concern to resolve the issues raised by the employees, we would not have been forced to come this far. Let me assure you that the state government cannot prevent more than 5 lakh employees from going on strike. They do not have so many jails or police forces to prevent employees from protesting,” he said.
Expressing solidarity with the employees, TRS MLA K Taraka Rama Rao said the political JAC and all its constituents would back the general strike. TOI