The indefinite strike by the government employees in Manipur that began on August 17 is yet to come to an end. The Manipur Secretariat Services’ Association (MSSA) and the Manipur Government Services Federation (MGSF), including engineers, doctors and nurses had jointly called for the strike seeking the fulfilment of their demands.
The MoUs that were signed between the state government and the Association and Federation have yet to be implemented. The inaction on the part of the government and its inability to resolve their issues has led to immense disgruntlement. The two striking bodies are demanding that the 7th Pay Commission recommendations be implemented for the state government staff.
The ‘cease work’ strike had begun on August 17, with employees demanding that they be paid 28 per cent dearness allowance (DA). They also want all promotional vacancies to be filled up immediately. They are seeking timely promotions and want all remuneration-related anomalies to be corrected.
The DA of the state government staff in Manipur is still only seven per cent, while the DA of Central government staff and many other states has been hiked to 28 per cent with effect from July 2021. This is being viewed as a discrimination. The fact that Central government staff got a DA increment despite the pandemic, while Manipur state government employees are still getting a measly seven per cent DA, has naturally led to a lot of displeasure.
Given the rising price of petroleum and related products as well as essential commodities, the present DA of seven per cent is inadequate point out the protesters. The inability of the state to take appropriate action despite the strike disrupting the normal working of the Secretariat, only added to the anger of the protesters.