DTC contract workers who have lost their jobs to contest in Delhi elections next year

Mamuni Das New Delhi | Updated on October 13, 2019 Published on October 13, 2019

New party to fight for those on contract

Politicians from established parties will see a new set of rivals in the Delhi elections next year.

Drivers and conductors of Delhi Transport Corporation (DTC), who lost their contract jobs, plan to contest the forthcoming elections by fielding candidates in all 70 constituencies of Delhi. These employees, who lost their jobs for going on strike while demanding the same level of compensation and benefits as their regular counterparts in the DTC, have floated a political party called the Mazdoor Ekta Party.

“All terminated employees will be given priority while distributing tickets,” Lalit Choudhary, leader of the newly formed party, who was a conductor in DTC for ten years before he lost his job, told BusinessLine. Mazdoor Ekta Party is not contesting Haryana and Maharashtra elections, as it feels it will be too much for a new party to take on.

Admitting that contesting elections is a tough business that requires a lot of money, Choudhary said the Party will gain support from many of workers who have either lost their jobs or those who fear losing their jobs.

Mazdoor Ekta Party will be supported by all contract workers employed in various places, he believes. “We have support from contractual employees across sectors — be it safai karamchari (sanitation workers), guest teachers, data entry operators (in various places such as hospitals, and even Election Commission) and security guards, Delhi Jal Board, among others,” Choudhary said.

Funds for election will be raised through small donations from a large number, just as the funds were raised to register a party in Election Commission. “We spent almost ₹2-2.5 lakh to get the party registered. Some donated a couple of hundreds, many donated couple of thousands,” said Chaudhary. The Party promises that it will work towards providing assured jobs up to 60 years for all on contract. “Companies that provide contract employees should not be engaged by main employers. At present, they are engaged by various departments for a few years. Then another company gets the tender and pay less to its set of employees to get the same task done. We believe the employees should be same, even if contractors change,” Choudhary said.

None of the Parties – Aam Admi Party, BJP or Congress – are assuring jobs, says MEP. All workers, even if self employed, should get social security benefits like hospitalisation expenses, pension, among others, added Chowdhary.

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Published on October 13, 2019
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