Unpaid WASA employees end strike after salary payment promise

September 28, 2023

HYDERABAD: In response to the prolonged non-payment of salaries and pensions in Hyderabad, the CBA Union of the Water and Sanitation Agency (WASA) employees, along with pensioners and workers from select Hyderabad Development Authority (HDA) and its Planning and Development Control wing, initiated a strike on Tuesday.

All participating employees converged at the Tulsidas pumping station, leading to the suspension of sewage services for an extended eleven-hour period. This action resulted in significant water accumulation in various parts of the city.

Leaders of the CBA union expressed the hardship brought upon employees and pensioners due to the withheld salaries and pensions, a situation that has persisted for nine months.

On Tuesday night, responding to the situation, Deputy Commissioner Hyderabad Tariq Qureshi instructed Assistant Commissioner Ahmed Murtaza to engage in preliminary discussions with the protesting employees and hear their demands.

Subsequently, Qureshi joined by Murtaza engaged in dialogue with the protesters, assuring them that the salaries would be disbursed within 15 days. This commitment led to the end of the protest.

Following the successful negotiations, employees resumed their duties at various pumping stations across Hyderabad, allowing the restart of pumping station motors and the restoration of the drainage system.

Leaders of the WASA Union disclosed that both the HDA director general and the deputy commissioner had provided assurances that the salaries and pensions would be paid on a bi-weekly basis upon the Sindh Finance Department’s approval of the relevant WASA employee summaries. In the event of non-compliance, the strike may be resumed indefinitely.