Coal India executives go on 3 day strike

Coal India Ltd (CIL) executives went on a 3-day strike from today protesting against non- fulfilment of their demands including performance-related pay, a move which could add to the woes of the state-run PSU as its output may be hit.

The company said however that the production so far is near normal. "The officers are on strike but production is near normal as senior executives are coordinating coal production," CIL Director (HR) R Mohan Das told PTI.

The Coal Mines Officers' Association of India (CMOAI), which has called the strike, said meanwhile that the production is bound to be impacted. It also said that management has convened a meeting with the association.

"Nearly 19,000 executives of CIL employed with various subsidiaries have proceeded on three day strike after a deadlock over talks between the management and (CMOAI) which called the strike failed," said a CIL official.

On impact on production, the official said it is likely to be affected but any assessment could be made only in the evening.

Coal India has a strong 3.49 lakh workforce, of which 19,000 executives are on strike pressing for implementation of performance linked pay (PRP) and new pension scheme, which requires the Coal Ministry's nod.

CMOAI Secretary General PK Singh said: "The strike is a historic success as the Coal India management and Coal Ministry has been neglecting officers demands for PRP and new pension scheme. We had earlier also served notices of strike in 2010, 2011 and 2013 but nothing happened and we are forced to take this extreme step."

Singh said almost 98 per cent of the officials are on strike as those on probation have been allowed by the Association to make their attendance.

CMOAI President V P Singh said: "We are meeting with Coal India management later today to hold discussions with regard to performance related pay for executives."

He also said that the Committee of Secretaries had held a meeting on the issue yesterday and decided that the matter should be referred to the Cabinet.

Comments could not be obtained from Coal India CMD S Narsing Rao on the issue.

Meanwhile, as per various officials, this strike could take a toll on production and roughly 1.2 million tonne (MT) output could be impacted on a daily basis.

However, it may be noted that the two-day strike called by trade unions in February last year had led to a production loss of around 0.71 MT only.

CIL accounts for over 80 per cent of domestic coal production. It has fixed a target of 482 million tonne for 2013-14. The company, before the strike, was expecting only 465 MT production.

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