Mamata denies assault on PSU officials
West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee Thursday dismissed reports that two officials of state-owned wagon-maker Burn Standard Company (BSC) were assaulted by agitating workers allegedly owing allegiance to the ruling Trinamool Congress.
"I have cross-checked thrice from various sources, there was no assault. Yes, there were heated arguments with the management after 175 workers were laid off. The workers have been agitating for some days and there was some heated debate, but no violence took place," Banerjee told media persons here.
However, the central public sector undertaking has already filed a police complaint and declared suspension of work alleging assault on the two officials - Santanu Sarkar and Debashish Bhattacharya. G.H. Nag, BSC deputy general manager for personnel relations, said a complaint was lodged Wednesday with the Howrah police station and a letter sent to the central government informing about the incident.
The alleged altercation took place Wednesday as BSC officials went to make peace with the agitating casual workers, affiliated with the Trinamool, who were demanding regularisation and other amenities since Feb 11.
Expressing displeasure over the retrenchment of 175 workers, Banerjee said she has directed the state chief secretary to hold talks with company officials for withdrawing the suspension of work. "I have asked the chief secretary to talk to the officials for withdrawing the suspension of work.
They have suddenly declared cessation of work, this is not appropriate. The workers are their own and they only have to resolve the matter. "If so many workers are laid off at once, naturally there would be agitation. But then both the parties must be lenient and try to resolve the matter," she said.