Shimla, Nov 6
CPI(M), contesting assembly elections on total 11 seats in Himachal, today announced that all its elected MLAs in the oncoming Vidhan sabha would not claim any Salary, pension until it would push the Old Pension System and a firm policy for out source employees in the state. Addressing a press conference here, party candidate from Shimla Tikender Singh Panwar and Senior Counsel in Himachal Pradesh High court Advocate Sanjeev Bhushan said that OPS is a big issue in the state assembly elections and if any party could ensure its proper implementation, it is only CPI(M).
Panwar said that Congress had given the guarantee of implementation of OPS, but it is vital that it gets restored in a proper perspective and not like the 4-9-14 policy. He said that party MLAs who would win the election would not claim any salary or pension until OPS wouldn’t be implemented effectively. He said that change in government is expected in this election, but such MLAs must be elected who could push the issue until the popular demands of people get redressal properly.
Addressing the press conference, Sanjeev Bhushan said that the track record of the Congress and BJP was no different in the implementation of the New Pension System. He said that there was an NDA government in the centre and Virbhadra Singh government in the state when the government signed the MOU of NPS on May 3 2003 and later adopted it from a back date of two years of MOU. He said that both BJP and Congress played an equal role in adopting NPS by alluring employees that ten per cent deduction would be done from salary with a 17 pc share of the government and money would be invested in the share market to be refunded after multiplying it many folds.
Since, 2004 onwards, CPI(M) or left-front governments in West Bengal, Kerela and Tripura refused to introduce or sign NPS MOU. It was in 2014, during the Congress RDF government in Kerela and the 2017 BJP government in Tripura, that these states adopted NPS.
Bhushan stated that, barring WB, all state governments have implemented NPS. He said that CPI(M) fought vehemently not to adopt this anti-employee New Pension Scheme as it does not favour employees.
Regarding the fallout of NPS, Bhushan added that a petition is pending before the Himachal Pradesh High court in which his client, who retired as a lecturer, was forced to work as a vegetable vendor in Kangra district as under NPS is entitled to get only Rs 1100 pension.
He also added that the policy of outsourcing employment is like a vegetable market business where talent and Human resources are being dealt in a manner, making it a lucrative business for the middlemen (HR contractors). He said that in the year 2000 state government appointed computer teachers on an outsource basis who are still agitating against the policy, and now they are sitting on a chain hunger strike for the last three months. Bhushan stated that mere government change does not work to get OPS and outsourcing policy adopted. “Right perspective is important, and without having effective leadership inside the assembly, it shall not be possible,” he added.
He gave an instance of the Assured Career Prohibition Scheme introduced in 2008, under which Employees were also deprived of 4 -9-14 . It was CPI(M) that fought against ACPS as the revised pay scale of employees was stopped by the erstwhile BJP state Government under the pressure of the centre. Since there was no MLA left to press its effective implementation, despite Congress coming into power in 2012 on the promise, it couldn’t restore 4-9-14, and subsequent notification made it redundant. He warned that it appears that without having strong leadership in 2022 if Congress would return to power, it would not serve the purpose of OPS till it was not implemented in the right perspective honestly, which requires the legislator of CPI(M).