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UP government invokes essential services Act to ban strikes for six months

The Uttar Pradesh government has invoked the Essential Services Management Act (ESMA) to render any strike or dissent by the workers as illegal. The Act will remain in place for the next six months.
According to the Act, the police are empowered to arrest those they suspect of violating the Act without a warrant. The Act was invoked as soon as UP Governor Anandiben Patel gave her permission. The notification was issued by the state’s Additional Chief Secretary, Mukul Singhal.
"The Governor is pleased to prohibit, for a period of six months from the date of publication of this notification in the Gazette, strikes in any public service in connection with the affairs of the state of Uttar Pradesh and any service under a corporation owned or controlled by state Government and any service under a local authority", it stated.
ESMA covers services such as railways, public transport buses, health services, including hospitals, post and telegraph, airports and ports etc. Once ESMA is invoked workers engaged in these essential services are prohibited from going on strike, or refusing to report for duty. Each state also has its own version of the Act.

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