UP employees' strike intensifies, sanitation workers join in

Lucknow: The three-day strike of more than 16 lakh Uttar Pradesh government employees gained strength on its second day on Thursday as sanitation workers joined the agitation. Trade union leaders said the sweepers decided to join the ongoing strike of government employees after they were lathicharged by police on Wednesday during their protest in the state capital. Employees of more than 155 departments are on strike leading to severely affecting work in many departments, including education, revenue and health, where it has come to a halt.  With the 'safai karmacharis' also going on strike, the sewage clearance and garbage disposal is likely to be hit across the state from Thursday, officials here said. Sources say on the first day of the strike, the state lost Rs 800 crore in the form of revenue. On Thursday, major hospitals like Balrampur, Ram Manohar Lohia, Lokbandhu in Lucknow wore a deserted look with medical staff away from work and patients milling around. The Regional Transport Offices across 75 districts of Uttar Pradesh also are non-functional with the staff keeping away from work. It is leading to a huge backlog of driving licences to be issued. More than 100 cases are now pending in consumer affairs courts as their staff is observing strike, an official said.