On the other hand, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government has informed SC that it has already released Rs 500 crore to the civic body.
The Centre on Monday told the Supreme Court that it cannot release funds to East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) for payment of salaries to sanitation workers who are on strike. The top court asked the Centre to file an affidavit stating the same. On the other hand, Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal-led Delhi government has informed SC that it has already released Rs 500 crore to the civic body. The EDMC workers are on strike over regular payment of salaries and regularisation of jobs, leading to a pile of garbage mounting up in the region.
Earlier, on October 4, the Delhi government had communicated to top court its intent to release a fund of Rs 500 crore for the payment of salaries.
After Kejriwal government’s offer, the Supreme Court bench also asked the Centre and Delhi Lieutenant Governor, as to whether they could also release a similar amount to “tide over the present crisis”.
The Supreme Court has also suggested that the issue should be tackled sans any prejudices between Government of Delhi and Lieutenant Governor. “It is common knowledge that sanitation workers are abstaining from work in East Delhi. As a result of this, there is a huge amount of garbage that has piled up. There are, of course, differences on how the issue is to be tackled. The Lieutenant Governor has one point of view but the Delhi Government has a different point of view,” the bench said.
On Thursday, the EDMC sanitation workers staged a protest near the residence of Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal to press for their demands, civic body officials said. The employees are on strike since September 12 demanding regular payment of salaries and regularisation of workers. Reacting to the strike, CM Kejriwal tweeted, “sanitation workers are protesting outside my residence. BJP has misled them. I am going to talk to them and present facts before them. I am really worried about the sanitation arrangements in the city and the workers. They have to protest every two months to get their salaries.”
The EDMC workers have been on and off a strike since October last year. The workers have been demanding regularisation of wages and jobs.