The sanitation workers -- pourakarmikas -- of Bruhat Bengaluru Mahanagar Palike (BBMP) staged a protest in front of the BBMP office on Tuesday (September 24) demanding the regularisation of their jobs.
The sanitation workers, along with the members of the All India Central Council of Trade Unions (AICCTU), gathered in front of the BBMP office demanding that nearly 18,000 pourakarmikas should be made permanent employees.
Since February 2018, the civic authority has been in the process of regularising the employee rolls after the Karnataka government decided to change the mode of payment to the sanitation workers from contract to direct benefit system.
According to the sources, only 4,000 pourakarmikas in Bengaluru have been made permanent and the authority had planned to outsource the rest without keeping them on direct payroll. The decision to regularise 4,000 workers was made after BBMP made an analysis of the number of sanitation workers needed in the city. It is also said that people above the age of 45 will be laid off.
This decision by the BBMP has raised concern among the rest of the sanitation workers, who have alleged this amounts to discrimination. "There are workers who are hired by contractors and then there are genuine BBMP workers, but we don't have problem with that. The problem is the discrimination they are showing towards us," a pourakarmika told International Business Times, India.
"There were times when I had to pawn whatever left in my house to run the family as my payment was still due. We have protested many times against several issues hoping that a change will come. We still hope," the sanitation worker added.