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Namakkal: Deputy Chief Minister M.K. Stalin urged workers' bodies and employee unions to feel free to voice their grievances by submitting petitions and get them redressed. He was addressing members of the Tamil Nadu Highways Road Employees Association (TNHREA) at Paramathi Velur near here on Tuesday.Urging the members to express themselves without difficulty he jocularly added that the present worker-friendly government does not dismiss anyone just because they democratically voiced their grievances. The Deputy Chief Minister felt bad that many associations still preferred voicing their petitions on stage than directly approaching the government to get an amicable solution. Quoting from Bible he said “Knock and it shall be opened, ask and you shall receive.” Referring to the various petitions made by members of the association, he expressed his inability to make any announcements in their favour as the date for the interim budget has been announced as February 4. Pointing out that any announcement after releasing the budget schedule should be made only at the Assembly, he advised the road workers to keep their hopes alive and expect more than their expectations.
Referring to the prime demand of the workers, to consider the dismissal period of the nearly 10,000 highway road workers for 41 months during the previous AIADMK regime for promotions and pay raise, Stalin said that he would soon discuss about it with the Chief Minister. He recalled that appointment orders have been handed over to children of the 93 highway workers who committed suicide after they were dismissed in September 2002.
Earlier, association president M. Shanmugaraja said that other important petitions among the 10 that were handed over to the Deputy Chief Minister included seeking government recognition to their trade union, handing over appointment orders to 36 more children of the deceased road workers and waiving the cooperative loans received by them during the dismissed period.
A copy of the petition was also handed over to Minister for State Highways and Minor Ports M.P. Saminathan.
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