Contractual employees of the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) and the Punjab State Transmission Corporation Limited (PSTCL) were lathi-charged on Thursday by police near chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh’s residence in Patiala.
The police resorted to the use of force when hundreds of protesting employees demanding regularisation of their jobs marched towards the CM’s house. Nearly 50 protesters were detained, officials said.
Earlier, the employees gathered at the PSPCL headquarters with their children and other family members and raised slogans against the corporation for not meeting their demands.
Balihar Singh, an employee union leader, said both the state government and the PSPCL management were hell-bent on promoting privatisation in the power utility.
“The PSPCL has already threatened the livelihoods of employees by shutting down public thermal plants. Moreover, instead of regularising the services of contractual employees, it is hiring employees through outsourcing,” he said.
The protesters claimed that the contractual workers were not paid on ‘equal pay, equal work’ basis and their salaries have not been revised since January 2016.
They also asked the corporation to give jobs on compassionate grounds to the families members of those who died on duty.