57 protesting OGDCL officials arrested in Islamabad
ISLAMABAD, April 20: Hundreds of officials of the Oil and Gas Development Corporation (OGDCL) on Wednesday got stuck on its premises when the recently-reinstated management trainees took over the building demanding that they should be promoted from executive grade 1 (ED-1) to ED-111; police and the company officials said.
The management called the police which arrested 57 protesters on the charge of creating law and order and damaging the property.
Under the Sacked Employees Reinstatement Act 2010, as many as 302 management trainees of the OGDCL were reinstated in December 2010. The management trainees are now demanding that they should be given double promotion from back date to compensate for the 14 years they lost after their sacking.
Scores of contractual management trainees poured out from their work stations and offices and occupied the multi-storey OGDCL office at around 3pm. A large number of trainees also gathered on the 16th floor of the building housing the office of the managing director.
Some other officials of the company also joined the protesters after which they started damaging furniture and other accessories in the building.
They demanded that they should be promoted to ED-III otherwise they would not leave the building.
Talks held between the management officials and the protesters failed as the latter refused to disperse till their promotion orders were issued. At around 5:30pm, on the complaint of the management the Kohsar police reached the spot and asked the protesters to vacate the building but they refused and became more violent.
As a result, the police raided the building and after a brief scuffle rounded up 57 of the protesters and got the building vacated. The arrested persons were brought outside the building and dragged into police vehicles and shifted to the Kohsar police station.
Officials of the OGDCL said the management trainees were appointed in 1996 against the salary package of Rs22,000. They are now demanding promotion to ED-III, a post which carries Rs45,000 salary and requires at least 10 years of service.
Manager external communication OGDCL Khalid Mehmood told Dawn that the trainees got hold of the 16th floor but at that time the company’s MD was not present in his office. The trainees demanded that the MD should be called to the office and issue order for their promotion, he added.
However, they were told that the promotion power rested with the company board, not with the MD.
At this, the protesters got annoyed and started misbehaving with the officials and damaging the office accessories, he said, adding a compliant was lodged with the police by the company’s security staff for registration of a case against them.