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Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year, 2011:

Dear Comrades,
At the outset, I would like to convey my heartfelt greetings to all of you on the auspicious occasion of  this Happy New Year, 2011  and expect that  the New Year may bring all sorts of joy and happiness to you and your family members and energize you to perform better in your personal, social, cultural, official and  trade union activities during the days to come. Comrades ! I cannot forget the day i.e. 11th January, 2004 when you all selected me unanimously to work for you as your Divisional Secretary. A period of six years was completed with agonies  and ecstasies  to which you are the direct witnesses. At this moment , it will be unpardonable, if I forget to express my sincere gratitude to you all  for the opportunity you have given  me to serve you accompanied with a powerful team  for four consecutive terms
At last, the year 2010 came  to a close with radiant hope of another new year 2011 round the comer. We have now a brand new year which has already been given a generous welcome . As 2010 year ends, it is time to look back and evaluate how we did in our lives, our relationships, our finances, our careers etc. In same way it is time to see how our country, our Department and our Union  did in various arenas.
India once again left its mark on the world by organizing the 2010 Commonwealth Games, officially known as the XIX Commonwealth Games, in Delhi,   from 3rd  to 14th  October 2010. A total of 6,081 athletes from 71 Commonwealth nations and dependencies competed in 21 sports and 272 events. India ranked 2nd with 101 medals ( 38 Gold, 27 Silver and 36 Bronze) next to Australia with 177 medals ( 74 Gold, 55 Silver and 48 Bronze). It was the largest international multi-sport event to be staged in Delhi and India, eclipsing the Asian Games in 1951 and 1982. India also ranked 6th with 64 medals ( 14 Gold, 17 Silver and 33 Bronze ) in 2010 Asian Games, also known as the XVI Asiad, which was began on 12 November and finished on 27 November 2010 in Guangzhou ( China ) being  the second Chinese city to host the Games, after Beijing in 1990. A total of 476 events in 42 sports were contested by athletes, making it the largest event in the history of the Games.
Visits of several Super Powers viz. US, UK, France, Russia, and China during the second half of 2010 to India kept India in news during 2010 with indication of the world's recognition of India's status as a rising global power. In March, Vladimir Putin, Russia's premier, was in India to cement lucrative deals, including plans to build 12 nuclear reactors in India, half of them by 2017 and sell an aircraft carrier and MiG fighter jets. British Prime Minister David Cameron whose massive 90-member delegation included six ministers, called for taking his country's relationship with India to "the next level" during a visit to the Asian economic giant. In the largest ever trip by a US president, Barack Obama came for three days, accompanied by some 40 planes and 6 armoured cars. Obama's trip included a visit to the country's financial hub, Mumbai, and the capital, New Delhi. During the visit, he emphasized the need to relax trade and investment barriers to boost economic relations between the US and India. The US president endorsed India's bid for permanent membership on the UN Security Council during a speech to parliament in Delhi. The president and his wife Michelle become the most high-profile guests to stay at Mumbai's Taj Mahal Palace hotel since the attacks two years ago by 10 armed men that claimed 166 lives.  On his four-day visit, Nicolas Sarkozy, the French president, accompanied by his defence, foreign and finance ministers and nearly 60 business leaders signed $9.3bn in nuclear deals with Manmohan Singh, the Indian Prime Minister. Like Cameron and Obama before him, Sarkozy emphasized India's increased influence in the world, which analysts say stems from its fast-growing economy and its resistance to the global financial crisis.  The Chinese premier Wen Jiabao’s visit to India comes hot on the heels of several world leaders making appearances in New Delhi, all of them hoping to create jobs back home and make some money. India belongs to the "BRIC" group of rapidly emerging economies, along with Brazil, Russia, and China. While the visit has stirred political controversy, China reiterated its support for India's aspirations to play a greater role in the Security Council - though it stopped short of expressing full backing for India. 
But as we look back in year 2010 , it is unfortunate that this year might go down as being year of scams. Crime also remained present in various forms in India as usual during 2010 - drug trafficking, gunrunning, money laundering, extortion, murder for hire, fraud, human trafficking,  poaching. black marketeering, political violence, religiously motivated violence, terrorism, and abduction. Earlier we have already written that when inflation has remained a problem,  Kashmir has exploded yet again, the Maoist menace has raged  unchecked, each session of parliament is rocked by one scandal or another, the Cabinet gave its nod to hiking the basic pay of the MPs from Rs 16,000 to Rs 50,000 per month costing the Govt. to Rs.211 crores including the arrears. This year, there have been unprecedented episodes of scams and scandals all over the country. We heard of Provident Fund Scam, sex-scandal in sports, Common Wealth Games scam, Adarsh housing scam, and lately of 2G (second generation mobiles) spectrum scam and Kamataka land scams. Though most of scams were in making much before, 2010 was absolutely exciting for media , frustrating for Indians and year for resignation for many politicians. At the time of introducing Common Wealth Games during 1930, the Britishers knew little that common wealth terminology would be adapted years down the line and little did terminology investors know that common wealth would be taken literally by Kalmadi and his associates. Allegations on them is that they made lot of wealth from common wealth games. Investigations are still on and Kalmadi maintains that he did nothing wrong. The song from Kamal Hasan’s AAPPU RAJA – “Raja , Raaj Karen , Hum Hai Raja….. ”    applies perfectly to A Raja of DMK and former Minister, Information and Technology. Seems to be have taken word so literally that he didn’t listen to even Prime Minister of India. Dubbed as mother of all scams the money involved in 2G scam is 1.76 lakh crores. Plot taken in name of martyrs , Adarsh Scam saw all whose who from politicians to IAS to IPS to even ex army personnel getting into it.  If 2G scam is mother of all scams, UP food scam is grand daddy of all scams considering the money involved. The scam is said to be worth of 2 lakh crores. So when Raja is alleged to have used modern way of making money, UP used age old way. The food acquired to be distributed in primary schools ended up being sold in market. So it is raining scam and amidst all these scams Ramalinga Raju seems to be an angel.

Let us see what 2011 shows to us.

It is a matter of great happiness that India  Post bagged the Prime Minister's Award for Excellence under 'Organizations' Category. The award was presented on Civil Services Day (21st April 2010). Full Credit goes to the Postal Employees all over the Country who unmindful of heavy staff shortage , unbearable work load , threats of punishments if they don’t perform 100% delivery etc. performed to the best of their ability to facilitate the Department of Posts to bag this prestigious Prime Minister Award for Excellence in Public Administration. India Post Web site was also awarded the Web Ratna Gold Icon under the category 'Outstanding Web Content' on 19.4.2010. The Department vide its order No.60-9/2010-SPB-I, dated 22.07.2010   issued instructions to all CPMGs / PMGs to fill up the direct recruitment vacancies of P A / S A cadre  of the year 2009 and exiting as well as firm anticipated vacancies  of the year 2010 which has since been completed. This is really one historic achievement and massive recruitment. This was never happened in the past. Thanks to the united efforts of the central JCA since this was one of the major demands during the proposed Indefinite Strike commencing 13.07.2010 which has been deferred after successful negotiation. The JCM Department Council Meeting was held on 27.08.2010  after  a long gap of four years. Our Prime demand on cadre restructuring has been accepted by the Department . The Department has also  introduced the ‘Discharge Benefit Scheme to GDS’ vide its OM No 6-11 / 2009 – PE I dated 1.9.2010.  We have also witnessed the  implementation of Modified ACP Scheme, constitution of cadre restructuring committee for Group-C, Postmen and Group D, re-designating Group-D as Multi Tasking Staff ,  introduction of Postmasters Cadre etc. during the year. While the creation of Postmasters Cadre is full of ambiguities and apprehensions, the same has created inter cadre conflicts.
We have witnessed that our CHQ and NFPE have taken all out efforts to fight for injustice done against the postal employees. During the re-verification process, NFPE has again proved its efficiency being the biggest union of the Department. Com. K. Ragavendran Ex-Secretary General, NFPE who was relinquished from the post of Secretary General in the last Federal Council due to his superannuation and retired from service on attaining the age of superannuation on 30.06.2010. The  second edition of ‘Venture’ was launched in the Federal council on 21.06.2010 at New Delhi which added another page to the success of our CHQ. Com. M. Krishnan, our CHQ President was elected unanimously as the Secretary General of National Federation of Postal employees in the Federal Council held at New Delhi from 20.06.2010 to 22.06.2010. We are happy about his election. The All India Postal Joint Council of Action consisting of NFPE and FNPO Federations and their Affiliated Unions and Associations and the All India Postal Extra Departmental Employees Union & the National Union of Gramin Dak Sewaks   unanimously decided to go on Nationwide Indefinite Strike from 13.07.2010 which was subsequently postponed after a successful meeting and negotiation with DG ( Post )  on 12.07.2010.
The 6th Biennial Conference of AIPEU, Gr.-C, Odisha Circle was conducted successfully at Balasore from 17.07.2010 to 19.07.2010 and this Divisional Union participated with its full spirit and wrote the name of Com. R C Mishra as the Circle Secretary once again including Sri B Samal as Asst. Circle Secy. No. 1. The problems given by this Divisional Union  to the Circle Union have been properly responded during this year.
For this Divisional Union, the year began with the successful conductance of our 6th Biennial Conference under the president-ship of Com. Purnendu Kumar Dash from 27.02.2010 to 28.02.2010 with Open Session at NALCO Auditorium ( Mahanadi Niwas), NALCO Colony (Phase – I), Near Kalinga Hospital , Bhubaneswar – 751 023.  The retirement on superannuation  of Com. P K Dash, our beloved ex-president on 30.11.2010 is a permanent loss for the union which we witnessed during this year. We faced boldly the re-verification process  of membership and tried our best to unite all under one platform. But in spite of all our efforts, some members left this union for the reasons best known to them. Still we have 76.85% membership. However, in spite of all odds, during 2010  we have successfully conducted all the programmes notified by our Circle Union / CHQ / NFPE and Confederation including the one day general strike of 07.09.2010. During this year, we have tried to give suitable suggestions to Circle Union / CHQ / NFPE on framing of charter of demands in connection with general strikes, amendment to the constitution of AIPEU, Group-C,  anomalies arising out of 6th CPC,   promotional avenues for Group-C postal employees, cadre restructuring in general and on Postmaster cadre in particular and many other issues found common to Central Govt. employees in general which have been responded by all the forums with positive indications. We have also tried to analyze the difficulties  arising out of  computerization, Project Arrow, introduction of Anti-Money laundering / Combating of Finance of Terrorism  norm for Small Savings Scheme in general. We have strongly protested the ongoing exploitations to the members of AIPEU, Group-C, Bhubaneswar Division, irregular order by Odisha Circle Administration for induction training at PTC , Vadodara and such other issues going against the interest of the Postal Group-C employees in general involving all concerned. We have succeeded in dequarterizing some post quarters and regularized recovery of monthly union subscription by effecting monthly salary payment to employees of this Division through Bank / POSB.
As usual, we have tried to bring out all developments starting from this Division to Directorate and activities undertaken by this Divisional Union to CHQ level through news letters from time to time. Going one step ahead, we  launched our own Divisional Website on 22.10.2010 to highlight the problems of Bhubaneswar Division in particular and common issues in general. Many comrades and our well-wishers who have visited our site during the period have encouraged us greatly to make it more beautiful and informative. By the end of this year and within a period of 70 days only more than 10500 visitors have gone through the site which has inspired us a lot.
Ahead, there is the 28th All India Conference of our CHQ in Pune from 9th to 11th January, 2011 where many problems will be discussed and many things will be resolved. This Divisional Union will attend the AIC with an eleven member team. We do expect  everybody’s cooperation and good wishes to proceed further positively. Hope you will continue to extend the same whole heartedly.
Once  again, Happy New Year to all our viewers and followers.
With fraternal greetings.
Comradely Yours,
Bruhaspati Samal
Secretary, AIPEU, Gr.-C

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