While hearing the plea filed by lockdown hit 250 Air India casual workers for the regularization of work and wages, Bombay High Court on Friday has sought government-run national carrier’s reply within two weeks.
A bench of Justices R D Dhanuka and V G Bisht has issued the notice to Air India today.
The interim petition was filed through Air India Ltd Kamgar Sangh and senior counsel Gayatri Singh and advocate Mini Mathur was representing the petitioners. The petition mentioned that most of the casual workers belong to the economically weaker section and their only means of earning is the daily wages from the national carrier Air India.
These casual workers had been litigating in the High Court and various other courts for the regularization of work and wages along with other issues. They were employed by government-run Air India on a rotational basis as catering assistants, baggage handlers, security scanners, and bus drivers.
The petitioner in their petition stated that they had been working with Air India for the past 25-30 years. All the employees who are either permanent or are working on a contract basis were called back by the airlines in May when they resumed the services after lockdown imposed in view of coronavirus outbreak. But some of the casual workers were not called back to the work. Even some workers who are living around the Chhatrapati Shivaji Maharaj International Airport were also provided work.
“The lockdown period has wrecked devastation. The casual workers are in desperate need of work and wages,” stated the petition. The petitioners are seeking work and wages due since March.
Through the petition filed, the casual workers are also seeking transport services and medical health facilities like those available to the other permanent employees.
COVID-19 outbreak has hit every country hard and many has lost their jobs, while many suffered pay deductions. Lockdown imposed in order to contain the spread of the pandemic has resulted in job loss of many. Daily wage workers constitute the largest percentage among those sufferers.