Delhi Chief Minisfer Arvind Kejriwal faces public ire as 1.5 lakh Municipal Corporation Department (MCD) workers in the city are on strike against non-payment of salaries by the government.
The workers demanded and an "immediate" release of funds and threatened to suspend work for an "indefinite" period if their demands are not met.
"It has been two-three months that the workers have not received their salaries. Despite repeated requests, our demands have gone unheard. Hence, we have staged a protest here. We will call off work for an indefinite period if our demands are not met," Sanjay Gehlot, president of Mazdoor Vikas Samyukta Morcha, said.
Gehlot claimed that employees from all the three civic bodies have taken part in the strike.
While the civil workers on Thursday protested outside Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia’s residence and at the administration office, many took to the micro-blogging website Twitter to vent their anger towards the CM who has gone to Bengaluru for chronic cough treatment.
Author Shishir Gupta, tweeted, “With Delhi staring at cholera with MCD strike, CM cannot leave the city to his juniors & go for naturopathy in Bengaluru.”
The ruling AAP government has also come under fire recently for its apparent expenditure practices on public advertisement. One user Jaini (@manichejain) lashed out at the party, tweeting, “Don’t know if #OddEven reduced pollution in Delhi but wasting salary money on its advertisement leading to MCD strike increased pollution!”
Another user Nishant Bhanot (@nishantbhanot) tweeted directly to Arvind Kejriwal, asking the CM what happened to all those ghost employees.
User Ashwani Rustagi also lashed out at the CM directly, stating that the CM can’t win MCD elections with MCD workers going on strike against him. "Directly or indirectly. U r responsible for MCD strike. u can’t win MCD election next year by ignoring them," she tweeted.
Besides salaries, the employees are seeking payment of arrears, regularisation of contract-based employees and unification of the three corporations.
Workers attached to East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) had gone on a strike making similar demands in October, 2015. But the strike was called off in the wake of a High Court order.