SC declines to intervene in Delhi civic employees’ strike

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New Delhi, Feb 4 (IANS) The Supreme Court on Thursday declined to entertain a plea seeking direction to three civic bodies in the national capital to take steps to resolve the strike by their employees that has resulted garbage piling up in the city.

“Go to the high court,” said a bench headed by Chief Justice T.S. Thakur as counsel for the petitioner Rahul Birla told it that the Delhi High Court has adjourned the hearing without passing any directions to the civic body.

Dismissing the plea as withdrawn, Chief Justice Thakur told the petitioner’s counsel: “Why do you file such petitions. Go to the high court.”

Over 1.5 lakh employees of Delhi’s three civic bodies – North Delhi Municipal Corporation, East Delhi Municipal Corporation, South Delhi Municipal Corporation – are on indefinite strike demanding the payment of their outstanding salaries.

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Initially the employees had gone on three-day strike starting January 27 but then decided to make it indefinite till their demands including payment of salaries was met.

Counsel told the apex court that Delhi High Court had issued notice on a PIL on January 27 and the matter was listed on February 2. However, the high court without passing any order adjourned the hearing and directed its listing on February 10.

As the North Delhi Municipal Corporation on February 2 told the high court that it had no money to pay sanitation workers’ January and February salaries, the court had asked the central government and the Delhi Development Authority to file their response on the PIL and posted the matter for February 10.

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