Steel Mills sacked workers protest outside SC to get CJP’s attention

By: News Desk      Published: 11:20 AM, 29 Dec, 2020
Steel Mills sacked workers protest outside SC to get CJP’s attention
File photo.

With no one paying attention to their plight, the sacked employees of Pakistan Steel Mills have gathered outside the Karachi Registry of Supreme Court where Chief Justice Gulzar Ahmed is currently hearing the encroachments case, reported 24NewsHD TV channel on Tuesday.

This protest aimed at pressing the apex court to look into the affair is coinciding with the latest development in which the chief justice has summoned Sindh Chief Minister Murad Ali immediately over lack of progress on orders to remove encroachments from the port city.   

Chanting slogans against the federal government, the protest say their sacking is illegal and the chief justice must take notice of their sacking as his orders have been wrongly presented by the Centre.

They mentioned that the services of 4,544 Steel Mills staffers – around 1,400 officers and 3,100 workers from Scale 2 to 3 – had been terminated without any reason. Moreover, their salaries were also not increased since 2009, they added.

According to the protesters, Prime Minister Imran Khan has not fulfilled any of his promises and their termination is a clear signal that the Steel Mills is moving towards closure.

The court orders these protesters are referring to were issued in March this year when Chief Justice Gulzar, heading a three-member bench, had asked the government asked to lay off all employees and appoint new people if it wanted to keep the Steel Mills running.

During the proceedings, the chief justice had said that the Steel Mills had been closed since 2015 but the employees were still receiving their salaries.

But later in July, the Supreme Court, interestingly, questioned the federal government’s initiative to revamp the ailing Steel Mills and warned the plan might lead to a disaster.

Whatever the management was planning would only create hurdles by burdening the courts with more 5,000 cases, Chief Justice Gulzar remarked.