Pakistan : Fight for your right: Workers' union warns of protest in Karachi if demands not met
Revenue offices remained shut for fourth consecutive day. STOCK IMAGE
HYDERABAD: As the tussle between Sindh’s senior revenue member, Shahid Gulzar Shaikh, and the workers’ union drags on,
the revenue offices in Hyderabad remained shut for the fourth consecutive day on Friday.
Workers have threatened to take the protest to Karachi on February 23, followed by a province-wide strike if Shaikh does not apologise and accept their demands. Due to this protest, thousands of people are suffering daily as there is no one to process their form VII, PRC, village regularisation, micro-filming, registry and transfer of land records.
The workers’ union has set up a camp at Shahbaz Building, the regional bureaucratic headquarters in Hyderabad since February 17. Their demands include a post upgrade, salary increment and restoration of 622 staff members of the anti-encroachment cell who were removed from service after a two-year duty.
“Punjab, Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa and even Balochistan have already accepted demands about the upgrade and salary increase,” said Sardar Shah, the union’s president. “But some officials in the Sindh government are denying us our rights.”
The secretary of the Sindh Board of Revenue, Ghazanfar Ali Shah, accompanied by the deputy commissioner of Hyderabad and Matiari, negotiated with the protesters. Shah claimed that they accepted the unions’ demands on February 18 and assured that a summary would be presented to the chief minister for approval.
Shaikh intervened and berated the secretary for acceding to their demands. “We will not end the protest till Shaikh apologises to us and forwards our charter of demands for approval to the chief minister,” said Imdad Siyal, another union leader.
The strike has not only affected the people of Hyderabad as this regional office is the only one in the province equipped with devices to scan form VII.
Published in The Express Tribune, February 21st, 2015.