DONETSK, U.S.S.R., JULY 11 (WEDNESDAY) -- Disgruntled Soviet coal miners began a 24-hour strike today aimed at pressing the government in Moscow to resign for not adequately responding to their grievances and getting the Communist Party to give up its privileges.

On the eve of the strike, miners in this economically depressed coal basin began forcing Communist Party representatives from dozens of mining offices in a move that marked a major vote of no-confidence in the party's ability to lead the Soviet Union out of its economic crisis.

The miners charge that the government has failed to fulfill promises it made a year ago to settle a protracted miners' strike over demands for more pay and leave, better housing and more consumer goods.

Strike committee spokesman Alexei Solovyev estimated 300,000 miners would walk out in western Siberia today. He said 61 of 130 mines would be struck for the entire day, and the rest for part of the day.

Four local mines have shut down their resident party committees and at least 15 others are expected to follow suit in coming weeks, official spokesmen of the coal miners said here Tuesday. The party committees -- a standard part of nearly every factory and enterprise across the Soviet Union -- have long symbolized the Communist stranglehold over Soviet workers.

In a country where Communists are clearly losing power and influence, the committees have become an anachronism. They consist of a handful of party officials who hold regular meetings to remind miners about the party and inform them about decisions made by the Kremlin.

Sometimes occupying air-conditioned offices above grimy mines, the committees have long been resented by miners as a symbol of Big Brother looking over them. "Miners say that we exercise a diktat over them, put pressure on them and represent the old party ways," said Alexander Chushkin, deputy head of the party committee at the Kalininsky mine, one of the four that is already being closed.

The closing of the party committees also comes amid widespread disappointment among miners with the Communist Party congress in Moscow, which has rejected proposals by radical delegates for the "depoliticization" of industry, the armed forces and the KGB.

"The miners were really dissatisfied with {President Mikhail} Gorbachev's speech, and to be frank, with nearly all of the other speeches at the congress," Chushkin said. "In Donetsk we have nothing in the stores -- no vegetables, no meat, no cigarettes, no matches, nothing, and they are holding speeches in Moscow that touch on none of these problems.

"We have a crisis breathing down our necks and they are giving no clear signal of how we are going to get out of it. It is a moment of truth for the party and the party does not seem to realize it."

The decision to close the party committee at the Kalininsky mine was made in part because of frustration over the party's nonchalant attitude toward economic problems, Chushkin said. A recommendation that party committees at all of the local mines be closed was made at the congress of miners held in mid-June in Donetsk. Individual mines began confirming the decision at a meeting held here Sunday.

Still, the party committees are not being abolished. Instead they will have to find new places for their offices, outside of the mine complexes.

As soot-covered mine workers emerged from the Kalininsky mine, they expressed hostility toward their party committee and relief that it was being closed. "The party has been useless to me and it really did not seem to make any difference if we have one or not," said Vladimir Marysin, 36, a mine worker. "It's best not to have one at all."

Another miner, Dmitry Ustinov, said, "The party has been totally discredited. Who else is to blame for all of the problems that we are having, like food shortages so bad that a man can't even feed his family? Of course the party committee should withdraw from our mine -- with its tail between its legs."

Besides discontent with the handling of the economy, the decision to close the party committee offices reflects an overall decline in local interest among miners in the party. In the last six months, 70 miners at the Kalininsky mine alone have turned in their party cards, according to a party official.

The decision also undercuts the party's monopoly status and helps open the way for a multi-party system in the Soviet Union. "You cannot take seriously the thought of welcoming new political parties into the system while the Communist Party alone has an office in every workplace," said Yuri Boldirev, a leader of the Donetsk mine workers. "Kicking the party out of the mine makes it easier for us to view it critically and to put it on a footing with other potential political parties."