GUWAHATI: The All Assam Sarba Siksha Third & Fourth Grade Employees' Union staged a protest outside the Sarba Siksha Abhijan (SSA) office at Kahilipara demanding service-life security up to 60 years along with a slew of other demands. The protest was staged after the SSA "failed" to address the Union's issues before the February 2 deadline that they had set. The Union also threatened to go for indefinite strike in all district and block Mission offices if their demands are not fulfilled.
The protest was attended by over 1000 workers from 33 districts of the State. The protest was also attended by members of the 'Sadou Asom Karmachari Sanstha' and the 'Sadou Asom Sikshak Sanmilani'.
Following the protest, the Union met SSA Managing Director B. Kalyan Chakraborty and submitted a memorandum. The MD assured the Union that the authorities will take initiatives to address their issues.
Highlighting the plight of the workers while talking to The Sentinel, Union president Bhabananda Sonowal stated, "Since the inception of this Mission in 2002, SSA employees have been rendering their services with utmost sincerity. But, our demand to extend our service-life security up to 60 years and other demands have not been addressed yet."
Sonowal also pointed out that the Union had submitted memorandums to the Mission Director and Executive Director several times.
"In addition to their normal duty, the SSA employees are performing additional duties allotted by the authorities from time to time. Besides Aadhaar enrollment, NRC and poll-related duties, we also perform duties related to the management of COVID, natural disasters among others," added Sonowal.
The Union demanded that their salary structure should be implemented as per the report of the Seventh Pay Commission. It is also demanding benefits as enjoyed by the permanent government employees like gratuity, medical reimbursement, earned leave, the old pension scheme, promotion, home loan etc.
Sonowal stressed that the 5% Dearness Allowance (DA) should be released along with arrears declared from July 1, 2019. He also stated that salary anomalies in District and Block offices should be corrected.